WASHINGTON -- Congress by a wide margin approved the first increase in automobile fuel economy in 32 years (what's the big hurry?) on Tuesday, and President Bush has signaled he will accept the mandates on the auto industry. The energy bill, boosting mileage by 40% to 35 miles per gallon, passed the House 314-100 and now goes to the White House, following the Senate's approved last week, said the Associated Press.
In a dramatic shift to spur increased demand for nonfossil fuels, the bill also requires a sixfold increase in ethanol use to 36 billion gallons a year by 2022, a boon to farmers (see "Axis of Evil" post below) . And it requires new energy efficiency standards for an array of appliances, lighting and commercial and government buildings. But does NOTHING to promote solar or wind energy production.
"This is a choice between yesterday and tomorrow" on energy policy, declared House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.), who was closely involved in crafting the legislation. "And we choose YESTERDAY!"
While some dipshit Republican lawmakers criticized the bill for failing to address the need for more domestic oil and natural gas production, 95 GOP lawmakers joined Democrats in support of the bill.
"This legislation is a historic turning point in energy policy," said Majority Follower Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) because it will cut demand for foreign oil and promote nonfossil fuels that will cut greenhouse gases linked to global warming. WTF? How will ethanol, which uses more energy to produce than it creates, cut greenhouse gases?
It increases energy efficiency "from light bulbs to light trucks," said dim bulb Rep. John Dingelberry (D.-Mich.), a longtime protector of the auto industry who was key to a compromise (read: "gutting") on vehicle efficiency increases.