6 November, 2007
Will America awake from its long climate sleep and become the new world leader for sustainable energy policies? It certainly looks like it judging from the fervour with which the Democrat presidential candidates are positioning themselves on this issue.
The latest bold plans for a green US energy future come from Hillary Clinton and some of the ideas expressed in her speech of 5 November are certainly very ambitious and even visionary:
“For this generation of Americans, climate change is our Space Race. It is our home-front mobilization during World War II and it is our response to the Great Depression. According to studies, the negative economic consequences of climate change will affect every part of our country, virtually every sector of our economy, and strain our local governments, cost jobs, and extract a horrific human toll” [my highlighting].
The most striking proposals of the Clinton plan are:
- 80% emission reductions from 1990 levels by 2050;
- a cap-and trade system with auctioning of 100% of pollution credits;
- new fuel efficiency targets for cars (55mpg by 2030);
- an aggressive programme for energy efficiency and green investments;
- renewables to generate 25% of electricity by 2030 and 60 billion gallons of home-grown biofuels available for cars and trucks by 2030;
- no new subsidies for nuclear power;
- 10 “smart grid city” partnerships to foster the development of a new electricity grid;
- a “National Energy Council” in the White House.
The full plan is available via the Clinton website.
- The Gristmill has an excellent overview of strengths and weaknesses of Hillary’s plans
- Financial Times: Clinton to negotiate Kyoto’s successor