Gov Richardson Will Be America’s Energy President

Proposals Dramatically Reduce Oil Consumption, Incentivize Alternative Vehicle Market, and Save Consumers Thousands in Fueling Costs

WASHINGTON, DC - Governor Bill Richardson today unveiled a bold new Energy and Climate Policy Plan at a speech to the New America Foundation.

"Gasoline is back up over $3 a gallon and people are hurting," stated Governor Richardson. "Retail sales are down, as many American households do not have income to spread across high gasoline costs and other life expenses. Consumers are hurting because US energy markets are not diverse and competitive, and because we have fed our addiction to oil instead of ending it."

"We need an aggressive national energy and climate policy that helps Americans who are struggling to heat their homes, fill their gas tanks and that moves us to safe, available alternatives as quickly as possible. We also need a policy that will help the US meet the two great challenges of our era: energy security and global warming."

Today, I'm going to stake my claim to being the next President, the Energy President, on the concept of a fast, comprehensive energy revolution in the United States," stated Governor Bill Richardson. "We need a man on the moon program to end our oil addiction, but we need it faster and bolder than others have suggested."

Governor Richardson's five point framework breaks our oil addiction, creates competition and value for consumers, strengthens our national security, creates American jobs and will the lead the world toward effective climate protection.

Goal 1--By 2020, dramatically reduce oil consumption by as much as 10 million through a series of bold measures:

  • Get low and zero petroleum plug-in cars into the marketplace, while sharply reducing the carbon emissions from our electric sector. The pure-electric vehicle offers simplicity and performance for an average daily commute in our larger metro areas, while the plug-in electric car or truck provides more range and flexibility for people who drive longer distances, as it can extend gas mileage above 100 miles per gallon.
  • Create a well-to-wheels low carbon fuel requirement that reduces carbon impact of our liquid fuels by 30% by 2020, including ethanol and biodiesel. Requiring conventionally powered cars and trucks, to be flex fuel capable and provide tax credits to the first 10% of gasoline retailers who install renewable fuel pumps.
  • Push fuel economy standards to 50 miles per gallon by 2020.
  • Reduce oil consumption for other modes of transportation-ships, trains, trucks and planes through new technologies, such as fuel-switching to electricity and renewable fuels.

Goal 2 -- Create new efficiencies and energy sources in the electrical sector

  • Call for a national renewable portfolio standard of 30% by 2020, rising to 50% by 2040 -- thus mandating utilities to provide a certain amount of renewable energy in the electricity sold to every consumer.
  • Push for a law requiring a 20% improvement in energy productivity by 2020. This 20 by 20 proposal has been studied by the Western Governors Association and will save western customers $21 billion a year by 2020.

Goal 3 -- Reduce greenhouse gas emissions at least 20% by 2020 and 80% by 2040.

  • Start with a market-based cap and trade system. By 2020 utilities and industry will be allowed to emit 80% as much global warming pollution as they do today. Combined with transportation sector savings, these changes will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2020.
  • Move to carbon-clean coal using safe, long-term carbon disposal or sequestration, and deploy these carbon-clean coal technologies here and around the world.

Goal 4 -- Capitalize and invest in America's strengths in science and technology

  • Establish a national energy innovation trust fund with a one-time funding commitment to provide needed research and technology support, invest in our world-leading institutions and science and technology programs.

Goal 5 -- America must lead by example and become a beacon of the New Energy Future.

  • Immediately return to the international negotiating table and support mandatory limits on global warming pollution and keep atmospheric carbon below 450 parts per million.
  • Cooperate with the European Union, the World Bank, the Asian partnership, the UN and our allies around the world to finance the small incremental cost of "doing it right."
  • Work closely with fast-growing nations like China, Brazil, South Africa, and India so that they use new, low-carbon technologies to help meet their energy demands.
  • Renew our relations with our largest oil supplies, Mexico and Canada, which supply about 20% of our oil and create a North American Energy Council to stabilize the oil and gas trade, build a continental electrical grid, help bring energy resources and productivity to market throughout the continent and develop a regional system for carbon trading.

Governor Richardson has a record of accomplishment on each of these challenges. As Energy Secretary, he pushed for aggressive energy efficiency standards, conservation in the midst of the California electricity crisis, a national renewable portfolio standard, and development of new vehicle technology.

As Governor of New Mexico, Bill Richardson has initiated mandates requiring utilities to meet standards of renewable energy production, supported generous solar, biodiesel and biofuel tax incentives, eliminated sales taxes on hybrid vehicles, and set aggressive targets to reduce global warming pollution. New Mexico is on track to exceed the Kyoto Protocols and has become the Clean Energy State.

"As a diplomat and negotiator, I have a record of dealing successfully with hostage-takers and tyrants," stated Governor Richardson. "Now I want to bring that experience to the task of freeing the United States from its status as international hostage to costly energy...and from the tyranny of oil dependence."

"I have a record, I have the will, and I am making this a central priority in my campaign for president," stated Governor Richardson.

After the Governor's speech today the League of Conservation Voters released a statement applauding Governor Richardson's plan. To read the statement please go to