Dean Lauds Senate on Energy Bill,
Wary of Further Bush Sneak Attacks

Honolulu, HI, November 26, 2003

HONOLULU-Democratic presidential candidate Governor Howard Dean, M.D., commented today on the environmental implications of the past week:

“I am relieved that the Senate rejected the Bush administration's horrific energy bill this week, and put the needs of future generations ahead of the wants of a few corporate interests. We are in desperate need of comprehensive energy legislation, but this bill did nothing to protect our economy, our security, our health, and our environment. I hope that the Senate leadership leaves this bill in the legislative graveyard where it belongs, and comes back next year to produce a bill that promotes a new energy economy like the one I proposed last month.

“Unfortunately, this very public victory masks the backroom defeats we faced this week. Without the consent of Congress, the Bush administration moved forward on three rules that will take our country backwards.

“First we learned that the EPA is considering a rule change that would allow low-level radioactive material to be stored in ordinary landfills that are designed only for industrial and chemical waste, and municipal garbage. Then a federal judge ruled in favor of the mining industry and approved the Interior Department's regulation that allows more mining on public lands. Finally, the Bush administration plans to open 8.8 million acres of the North Slope of Alaska to gas and oil development. This development would put critical ecosystems at risk and would encroach upon the habitat of migratory birds, whales, and other wildlife. If we had an energy economy based on renewable resources and energy efficiency, we would not need to even consider such a proposal.

“Americans demand and deserve a President who acts in their best interest, not one who writes law solely on behalf of large corporate campaign donors.”

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