As a follow up to the ongoing debates and the VP Green Report we published last week, we want to examine presidential candidates views on the environment. We figured since we covered the vice presidential candidates we would give the main attractions some lip service. Both Obama and McCain have very different plans for our country on a number of issues. Here at Autonomie, we wanted to highlight their ideas and history on both the environment and energy policies. So here we go:
As we mentioned before, here at Autonomie Project we are not endorsing a particular candidate but will be voting with the ticket that best meets our values as individuals and as a company.
- Co-sponsored the Climate Stewardship and Innovation Act of 2007, which caps pollution to 2004 levels by 2012, although only in utilities, industry, and transportation.
- McCain heavily promotes nuclear power as an alternative to oil. He also supports the use coal and will designated federal funds to do so. On his campaign website he has reported that he plans to spend 2 Billion annually to promote and research clean coal.
- At one time, he was against drilling for oil in Alaska, but has since stated that he believes America should drill for oil domestically to lessen America’s dependence on foreign oil. On the campaign trail he has pushed this idea through the slogan “Drill here, Drill now!”
- He has proposed a Cap and Trade Policy that would set a limit of greenhouse production and create a market where ability to emit pollution would be traded. Believing that the lower cost energy production would succeed. The reduction for the cap are set to the following: reduce emissions to 1990 levels by 2020.
- McCain has been very outspoken against the Bush Administration’s lack of attention and action against the environment and global warming, however he does agree with them on the Kyoto Protocol. He has said that America will not participate in the Protocol unless China and India are obligated to reduce emissions as well.
- Has not made up his mind on the use of Ethanol as an alternative fuel yet, believes it does nothing to help the air quality. But then he is now a proponent on it, however still believes the government should not fund subsidies.
- Obama has stated he intends to keep the federal ban in place on offshore drilling, as well as drilling in Alaska. However, during the course of the campaign he has said he will consider it; stating “…we have to compromise in terms of a careful, well thought-out drilling strategy that was carefully circumscribed to avoid significant environmental damage — I don’t want to be so rigid that we can’t get something done.”
- He also believes a cap and trade system is the key to cutting emissions. His plan calls to reduce emissions 80 percent below 1990 rates by 2050 and emission permits would be up for sale, causing polluters to pay for the amount of greenhouse gases they emit.
- Obama has been a strong supporter of developing new types of alternative energy and has introduced his New Energy for America plan which would not only fund new research for alternative energy, but also provide short term releif for middle America.
- He has called for the creation and funding for hybrid and new cleaner car emissions research and devolopment. In fact, to fund this he introduced the Heath Care for Hybrids Act, this asks the American auto industry to produce and devlop more efficient hybrids in exchange for the government taking care of retired auto workers heath insurance. He is proposing to get 1 million Plug-In Hybrids on the road by 2015.
- Cosponsored the Coal to Liquid Fuel Production Act of 2007 which used high energy to convert coal into liqued fuel, which is quite damaging to the environment. Many environmentalists opposesed this bill. However, Obama has since stated that he will only support coal energy if it emits 20 percent less carbon than traditional fuels.
- He is calling for the creation of millions of new and green jobs by “strategically investing $150 billion over the next ten years to catalyze private efforts to build a clean energy future.”
So there you have it: a quick rundown of the key issues both Obama and McCain support regarding the environment. Now its up to you to decide who has a better plan for the environment, energy, and the future of our nation!! The choice is yours.