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E-M:/ Hurricane/Energy - Response from Sierra Club to U.S. Rep. Joe Barton's Speech



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Enviro-Mich message from "Rita Jack" <rita.jack@sierraclub.org>
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-----Original Message-----
From: Brian.OMalley@sierraclub.org [mailto:Brian.OMalley@sierraclub.org] 
Sent: Wednesday, August 31, 2005 3:56 PM
Subject: Hurricane/Energy - Response from Sierra Club to U.S. Rep. Joe
Barton's Speech


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  August 31, 2005
CONTACT: Brian O'Malley, 202-675-6279


            America Needs Real Solutions To Our Oil Dependence
       Statement by Carl Pope, Executive Director of the Sierra Club


"Our hearts go out to the victims of Katrina and their families.  However,
this is a time to lend a hand, not point fingers or to make political gain
- which is what politicians who favor drilling the Arctic National Wildlife
Refuge and off our coasts are trying to do.

"Hurricane Katrina spotlights the danger of our dependence on oil, and how
fragile our reliance on it is.  This one event has seriously affected the
production, refinery capacity, and price of oil in the United States.  We
can decrease the effect of future disruptions by reducing our dependence on
oil, not putting up more rigs and drilling our special places.  The fact
is, we cannot drill our way to oil independence - the United States is
responsible for 25% of the world's oil consumption, and yet we have less
than 3% of the world's oil supplies.  Additionally, the current lack of
refinery capacity is the result of a conscious decision by the oil industry
in the 1990s to limit supply to increase profitability - and they have
succeeded.  Exxon is the most profitable company in the world, and just
last quarter posted profits of $7.84 billion.

"The answer isn't on the supply side of the equation - it is on the demand
side.  Making our cars, SUVs and other light trucks average 40 mpg would
save more oil than we currently import from the Persian Gulf or could ever
get from the Arctic Refuge combined.  Taking this step would save consumers
money at the pump, cut America's oil dependence, and curb the heat-trapping
pollution that causes global warming."

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