[Comm-Council] FW: NEWS RELEASE: Governor urges feds to improve fuel mileage standards
KENNEDY Robert * DAS DO
Robert.Kennedy at state.or.us
Mon Jun 5 16:46:02 PDT 2006
From: SHERWOOD Jodi L * Governor's Office
Sent: Monday, June 05, 2006 12:23 PM
To: EXEC Net List
Subject: NEWS RELEASE: Governor urges feds to improve fuel mileage
Governor <<Picture (Metafile)>>
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 5, 2006
Lonn Hoklin (503.378.6169 or 503.559.1034)
Governor urges feds to improve fuel mileage standards
State government leads by example with more fuel-efficient cars
Portland, OR-Governor Ted Kulongoski today urged the federal government
to do the "single most important thing it can do to reduce our
dependence on imported oil: increase the fuel efficiency standards of
our nation's vehicles."
The Governor said that historical evidence clearly shows that vehicle
efficiency standards contribute directly to energy independence. When
Congress passed such standards as part of President Jimmy Carter's
energy program in the late 1970s, the nation's oil imports, which
accounted for more than one-third of the nation's oil use, declined to
less than 20 percent by the mid-1980s.
"The problem is that in the past 20 years, those standards were not
updated, and the nation's oil imports steadily rose," the Governor said
in a press conference with the Oregon State Public Interest Research
Group (OSPIRG). Today's imports represent about 60 percent of America's
total oil use, and exceed 10 million barrels of oil per day, the
The good news for consumers, he added, is that new technologies like
hybrid engines enable minivans, SUVs and trucks to be fuel efficient.
Vehicle efficiency standards no longer equate to small cars or unsafe,
ultra light vehicles.
"In Oregon, state government is leading by example," the Governor said.
"At my direction, the state fleet is transitioning to more fuel
efficient vehicles, like hybrids, saving thousands of dollars on fuel
every month. The fleet also has increased its use of ethanol and
bio-diesel, again resulting in fuel savings and cleaner emissions."
Governor Kulongoski has also championed several clean diesel initiatives
that will result in less idling of commercial trucks in Oregon. The
result is fuel savings for truckers and improved environment both for
truckers and the general public.
"I was happy to have OSPIRG's support in this effort," the Governor
Though he supports strong action to achieve energy independence,
Governor Kulongoski opposes sacrificing a clean and healthy environment.
"The first and best step is making sure that we make the most efficient
use of the oil that we consume today," the Governor said.
Citing a study by the Union of Concerned Scientists, updating fuel
efficiency standards to 33 miles per gallon by 2016 would reduce the
nation's oil demand by nearly 500,000 barrels of oil per day by 2015 and
2.1 million barrels in 2025, the Governor said
By contrast, efforts to produce more oil by drilling in the Arctic
National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) would produce only about one million
barrels of oil a day. "It just doesn't make environmental or economic
sense to drill in ANWR," the Governor said.
Acknowledging that the federal government has aggressively asserted its
exclusive jurisdiction over fuel efficiency standards, the Governor
Kulongoski posed a question: What is the federal government doing with
this important responsibility?
"I am convinced that if left to the Bush administration, it will be
another several years before we see any increase in vehicle efficiency
standards," the Governor said. "I am not optimistic those increases
will be meaningful. Our best chance is to prevail upon Congress to
adopt a meaningful fuel efficiency standard of 33 miles per gallon."
The Governor said he will send a letter to Oregon's congressional
delegation today, seeking enactment of such standards.
Link to the letter http://governor.oregon.gov/Gov/pdf/letters/fuel.pdf
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