tv [untitled] CSPAN June 10, 2009 9:00pm-9:30pm EDT
planet, and utilize that to make liquid fuels, high density energy fuels that can then be used as a fuel -- as an energy storage medium. just like the advanced batteries you were talking about. there are people doing research today on a much more efficient method of high drolcies that would then utilize hydrogen as the output basically do in the energy field what trees do every day. take sunlight and then store that as energy in a way that you can use. . and if any country in the world should be leading these efforts, it's the united states. and it's time for to us take back our rightful position, leading the world on the future clean jobs, but we can only do that through changes in policy. if we sit back and watch as the battery research moves to korea and japan and other places, we will be buying the advanced
vehicles from those countries. and instead we need to be supporting the advanced battery research that's being done in places like new york and my own home district. we were doing research on batteries at a national laboratory to make sure that we do a better job increasing the density and the safety of these things. this is a huge opportunity for us. as you said, it's a job creator and the costs, the opportunity costs of not acting really hits us in the west, i think, probably more than anyplace except for maybe where you have a coast line. we are reliant for our economy on water, on the water that falls just like it does in your district in colorado, congressman polis, and that water flows downhills and runs our farms and runs our factories, it keeps our rivers alive and yet we have seen a dramatic decrease in the amount
of snowpack that actually reaches places like albuquerque because it's evaporating earlier, the temperatures are rising, the mountains in new mexico have seen something like a seven-plus-degree african american height swing in temperatures over time. that's impacting forest fires, it's less water for all of to us use for economic activity and so the cost of not doing anything, of not implementing this bill which is basally an apollo project for energy independence and jobs in this country is so much greater than the cost of acting. >> if my colleague would yield, thank you, because the point you've both been making about, you know, the need for that competitive edge for american industry is really underscored by the very american companies that in fact have endorsed this legislation. let's just take the automotive
sector. ford, chrysler, g.m., john d e -- john deere, caterpillar, have all endorsed this legislation. there's a reason for that. they understand that to stand still with existing technology is not going it cut it. they're going to continue to lose market share and they're going to lose to foreign competition. if i may, i'd just like to read into the record some of the other companies, especially in the energy sector, and the reason i want to read these names into the record is because so often we hear from our friends on the other side of the aisle, this is going to destroy american businesses as we know it. that would come as news to the following companies who have enthusiastically endorsed this specific bill. duke energy, colby the way represents 75% of duke's portfolio, american electric power, edison electric institute, ex lon, pg yapped e corporation, f.p.l. group in florida, austin energy, consolation energy, seattle city light, public service enterprise, p&m resources in new
mexico, shell oil, conoco, b.p. america, energy energy, g.e.,al could hea, dupont, dow chemical, johnson&johnson, national venture capital association. these are american companies that understand the point you were making a little bit earlier, mr. polis, that to stand still is to lose ground and that actually we have an enormous opportunity here to regain america's competitive edge, create jobs and once again lead the world in innovative technologies and techniques. but we've got to make that initial step. this bill creates that framework. >> mr. connelly, one of the things mr. heinrich talked about, if these jobs aren't created here they're going to be created elsewhere, the research will be done elsewhere, the fact that the american industry, the companies that you recognized who are, you know, many of them american-based companies, feel that this is a good policy, i mean, these are global problems we're facing. some way or other the world is
going to need to wean itself off of fossil fuels. don't you think that this policy helps make sure that those solutions happen here in this country? mr. connelly: absolutely and the bill takes care where there are trace sensitive and energy intensive sensitive energies to give them a transition period of time. in some cases a very generous transition period of time in which to get themselves competitive again. mr. tonko: sometimes the issue comes across in such a complex picture that it's difficult for people to get their arms around what the discussion is all about. to repeat what i mentioned earlier about the hundreds of billions of dollars that we have been spending that go to foreign nations, that import to us these fossil -- fossil-based fuels, we need to see this as an embracing of the american intellect, to take ideas that are there, shelf-ready, and put them to work for us.
it's quite simply american power to power america. it is providing our opportunity to utilize the american workforce, to produce this power that then powers this country to do all that it needs to do. it provides great opportunities for manufacturing sectors and for our business communities, small and large, because i witnessed first-hand what happens when we retrofit these facilities, even our dairy farms in new york state, with state-of-the-art opportunities for efficiency, where you need to use fuel for the power that you're using, let's use it efficiently. that's if good for the environment, it's good for the economy, the good for the energy equation. but in many cases we'll be able to produce that power we need with no fuel costs. so the $475 billion that has been spent annually that goes outside this nation's boundaries is a fuel cost. we won't have that fuel cost
when we benignly utilize our wind, our sun, our soil and our water. and i think that's an effective way to approach a situation where we allow for the brain power of this country that is invested in when people choose their career paths. we want to make certain that all that investment in the classroom and on the college campuses and in the private sector through its r&d opportunities and workforce training an development, we want to put that to work here and we have those available solutions, we need to go forward with that sort of concept and again it takes a vision, i believe this public, the american public, joins in the efforts when a vision is painted for them. it's been painted in bold, green measure by president obama, his administration is taking to us in gnaw level of thinking, speaker of the house and the leadership in this house, the members, the rank and file members of the majority, know this is the right thing to do. and it takes that boldness of vision and that determination,
the integrity, to move to us this new economy. and it will happen. mr. polis: so what you're say something rather than -- you know, we're sending hundreds of billions of dollars a year to saudi arabia, to the arab countries, to venezuela, that money is gone from america when it's gone. we send it over there and then they -- that's fueling their economy. some of that money here and create clean energy here? mr. tonko: absolutely. but i i would add this, we have seen far too many of our sons and daughters lost in the efforts to -- in our involvement in the mideast. some of this money is going to those nations that we are now fighting against with the war on terrorism and the war in the mideast and so it really behooves us to think in newer terms, in bolder terms, in ways that build our independence, our security and our national
security. which is critically important to us as with we speak. >> that word independence is absolutely critical because this legislation will give us the independence that as americans we crave. and i can say, you know, one of the pieces of this is a renewable energy portfolio standard. something that says all the utilities are going to create a certain portion of their power from renewable and clean sources. we've had that for a number of years in new mexico and it's worked remarkably well and in concert with photo volume take technology, this spring, you know, starting march or april, i started getting a credit from p&m resources that you mentioned earlier, because i've got solar panels tied into the system and during the day when we're not home we're selling power back to the grid at the very time when everyone's turning on their air conditioner. it is innovative solutions like that that are already working in so many places, that are going
to give people freedom from those energy bills and independence from this international and foreign oil that sucks so much money ouof our economy in the united states. mr. polis: a good point you raised, new mexico and my home state of colorado have been leaders in terms of instituting new energy standards, also instituting solar technology. and our state level and probably yours, it's opponents made the same arguments. they said, oh, this is going to drive jobs out of colorado and new mexico. this is going to hurt the economy. well, here we are several years down the road, this has made both of our economies stronger. isn't this a great success story in new mexico? mr. heinrich: absolutely. and always better to be the leader that's creating jobs than the state or country that's following and watching those jobs go someplace else. mr. connelly: i might add to the point you're making, mr. polis. in my state of virginia, for example, we have a gubernatorial election going on now and one of
the candidates has talked about, drill now, right off the shore of virginia. maybe that makes sense, maybe it doesn't. but the wind power potential off the shore of virginia dwarfs any he estimates of what possible oil and gas reserves there might be offshore. and could create jobs and could actually make virginia an enormous net exporter to the northeast and the midatlantic of a renewable source of energy forever. mr. polis: colorado's in this boat and new mexico, too, we are blessed with some natural resources, with natural gas and with oil and i have to tell you, it's a mixed blessing. first of all, it's highly cyclical. we've been through several cycles in colorado where there's been oil boom times, everybody was riding high, three years later the price crashes, everybody's out of work, everybody's looking for work. with we are also using a nonrenewable energy source. you take it out of the ground, the gone. we're also destroying one of our
other revenue sources that's at odds wh the tourism industry, with preserving our natural heritage to colorado residents, the quality of life that atracks people to new mexico and colorado in the first place. we can have and we do have now, thanks to the leadership in our state of governor ritter and the leadership of our voters who passed the number of these initiatives overwhelmingly, the renewable energy standard was passed by colorado voters with over 60% of the vote. they didn't buy the arguments out of the other side. it's even more popular today five years down the road than it was at the time because people have seen that effect. we can have a more stable economy, we can create jobs and promote a clean environment all at the same time. mr. tonko: i believe that even t. boone pickens has said we're not going to drill our way out of this given crisis. this energy crisis needs to be addressed in a constructive way. the constructive way reminds us that there are ways -- ways to produce power, as you suggest, without a fuel cost and then our
fuel of choice needs to be energy efficiency. that plant which we never built simply because we have reduced demand by a given order of megawatts is then allowing us to avoid the construction of a larger facility. and we can do that. when you look at the side of this nation, the population, the business sector, any one percent of improvement translates into a huge supply, as representative con ly mentioned earlier, of power saved. and the demand side of the equation was not addressed by the previous administration. it was supply, supply, supply. how much more can we create and let people consume? we have some of the most glut news to consumption in the entire world. and we know that there are ways to allow us to be more efficient and provide those savings by addressing demand side solutions and i think that's where this plant is talking -- plan is taking us also. mr. polis: i'm happy that my friend from new york brought up the demand side in conservinger in.
there are many federal provisions that are part of american clean energy and security act and in terms of what they mean to american families, the estimates are that american families will save $750 per year, per household, within 10 years, because of the energy efficiency provisions of this bill. what would you do with another $750 a year? that is a savings, the average american family will have, as a result of the energy efficient sises. mr. connelly: that's such a good point you're bringing up, mr. polis. because we hear from the other side deliberate, seemingly deliberate, misinformation on the floor of this house and the figure constantly cited is a little over $3,100. the opposite is true. as you just indicated. and this new study, the american council for energy efficiency economy just issued that says, that the federal energy efficiency provisions in this bill will in fact save $750 per household by 2020 and $3,900 by
2030. so maybe our republican colleagues just had their numbers inverted. and i might point out that that magical figure of $3,100 a year that they cite and derive this bill as a cap and tax bill, not a cap and trade bill, is based on a study done by an m.i.t. professor, rather obscure study, and interestingly that professor, the author that have study, has written the republican leadership of this body objecting to their use of his study saying they vastly overstated any potential cost that in fact might owe crew to consumers and it's based on faulty analysis as well. the provisions of this bill are carefully drafted so that any increase in utility costs, for example, that aren't already protected by the provisions of the bill, would not be allowed to be passed onto consumers. it is patently false and talk about not reading the bill. clearly our friends on the other side of the aisle either haven't read the bill or choose to
ignore the facts therein. but there are carefully crafted provisions that not only protect consumers but as our colleague mr. polis indicated and as this recent study indicates, will in fact save, not cost, consumers hundreds of dollars and ultimately thousands of dollars every year. . povet mr. polis: that's a lot of money that this country safes. tonchingtonching controlling your deficit when it comes to energy choices, having the options available, having the production here, having the efficiency tools that we require, not only utilize and shelf-ready and create these given opportunities. smart meters in which we invested this year with the
recovery act are a great way to provide for control over your energy consumption and your bills. to utilize off-peak and have a smarter opportunity presented for us as consumers. that's all available with technology today. and as we further develop these packages that will enable consumers to control their energy, that's a great thing as we develop this american power to power america. mr. connolly: this same study that we just referred to, i want to read a paragraph. it says, in total, the energy efficiency provisions of h.r. 2454 could reduce energy use 5.4 quad drillion. this is 47 of the 50 states.
moreover, such savings will avoid metric tons of carbon emissions, the equivalent of taking 49 million automobiles over the road every year. by 2030, these energy efficiency savings go to 11 quaddrillion b.t.u.'s, this is incredible and that's what you are getting at, there are other efficiencies that can be achieved that will lead to savings to consumers that we haven't calculated. mr. heinrich: what my friend from virginia is describing is a conservative position and that is one of the ironies in all of this when you realize that we have nonrenewable resources and they are very valuable and cost us billions of dollars.
to stretch those out and utilize them more effectively, that is a conservative position not to waste them but to utilize them as efficiently as we possibly can. i remember during the campaign of 2008, there was the whole issue of hearing rush limbaugh that a tire gauge could be of any valuable at all. we will fight like dogs and cats over this postage stamp of oil and gas in alaska, the same of which which can be con served that the people could use the tire gauges, that is a fundamental irony. we are going to continue to use oil and gas and continue to use coal. we should use those nonrenewable resources as conservatively as we possibly can.
tonchingtonching i would -- mr. tonko: i would go back to an earlier statement. at the same time, we need to bear in mind, this is the way we draw attention to this nation and her intellectual capacity, where we become the exporter of energy thinking, ideas, innovation. this is the strengthening of the economy, as women invest in this economy in the american know-how, we become stronger as we develop the solutions for the air we breathe, water we drink and the solar that we utilize for our own opportunities and routine opportunities throughout life. we can then become this go-to nation which is more critical in the space-race wars in the 1960's because we committed in thinking in bolder terms. change is not easy to get our
arms around, but change is what we ought to be about as leaders of legislative policy that can take orders into jop development. mr. polis: it will make sure that a lot of this technology is created here. we worry about the trade deficit. it seems like america doesn't make anything anymore. we are importing everything from around the world. here's our opportunity to start making things again. i visited a company in my district, they got a big order from china, they are exporting solar panels. mr. connolly: i visited a company in my district that manufactures microchips. the manufacturing capacity has shrunk. they have a factory they had to close in the midwest. they are retro fitting and going to make solar panels at this factory should we pass this bill. they are waiting for this bill
to pass and they will manufacture solar power. mr. tonko: there are those industries that are energy intensive and trade intensive and those are the focal points we can provide. if you can produce something at lesser cost, which becomes a reality, if you provide energy, it makes it more efficient. some of these nrs that are -- if you improve upon, your resources more wisely and if he cantively that produces a lower cost of production of that given product. so it makes you more competitive at the global marketplace. mr. polis: there is a family out there and let's say there are steel workers, we can assure them this won't hurt them competitors at all?
mr. heinrich: not only on the steel front, the way it's structured actually rewards them for being more efficient and we produce the oil in this country with less than a carbon footprint than they do in china. one of the incentives in this legislation is it will incentivize spending money on capital investments that will continue to bring down the carbon footprint and increase the efficiency, making steel in this country more competitive worldwide in a way that is even comply ant with the w.t.o. we will be improving the competitiveness instead of shipping the jobs and feeding them to another country. mr. connolly: to the point you are making, the legislation specifically addresses the steel and cement industries. and provides them a very generous transition through the year 2025. thereafter, the president could
still extend that transition should he or she decide it's warranted and if they decide it's not, it's phased out, but on a maximum of 10% per year. so it's a very generous set of circumstances to make sure that our domestic steel industry and cement-producing industries have the requisite period of time to make the transition. mr. polis: along the way, they have an incentive and they earn money if they find more efficient ways to produce. which they are going to do. american ingenuity. there is no problem that is created that yankee ingenuity can't solve. and i think what mr. connolly pointed out, we will be there with the right incentives by 2025. we not only -- this bill will create a new research base and
the salvation of our existing manufacturing jobs by showing them the way to do it more cleanly and provide an economic incentive that is money in the pockets of workers and workers by being ahead of the curve by ending their life on fossil fuels. torn mr. tonko: as we choose to speak to this green energy thinking, our vision shared with this nation will go into all sorts of layers and reach our youngest of population where in the classroom they may be inspired to move into these careers. we need to encourage that outcome and our technically sophisticated workers. when they hear the discussion out there and don't hear the denal and the deception but get the facts brought to them and see the potential that exists today and that can grow into the
future, that can't help but spark the interests. how many young people were watching the first step on the moon. how many people chose to be scientists and engineers to go along that path. our community colleges that are there as the campus of choice in so many communities where they can train and retrain a work force to become those stewards of the environment that will help us in this agenda to be most energy efficient and to grow r&d opportunities in the lab. this is a tremendous opportunity to lift up from an economic crisis that has hampered a lot of progress for this country and has denied competitiveness for our manufacturing base. mr. heinrich: this is our generation's apollo project. and we intend to meet it, not
cede that leadership to someone else. when you discuss these issues, independence, ingenuity, entrepreneurship, conservation, those are things our nation has been built upon. and we can't turn our back on them now. mr. polis: what started this whole discussion is the cost ofing action and we are talking about the benefits of action. we have made that case, whether it is 750 a year and extra jobs being created. these are the benefits. when we look at the cost side, that is forcing us. mr. connolly: i listen to the rhetoric of our friends on the other side of the aisle and they never talk about that, the cost of inaction to the auto industry is the utter collapse of the collapse of auto industry and don't talk about the challenge of power generation and don't
talk about the extraction industries or what it means to any other kind of manufacturing capacity. for that matter, technology today, the industry that dominates my district, the information technology industry is dependent on the reliable source of energy and that -- they understand that needs to be if we are going to stay competitive with foreign competition in the sector. mr. polis: another cost that we never heard the folks on the other side talk about, over $800 billion with the war in iraq. our foreign investments in the middle east, even after the first war in kuwait, the big war in iraq, our ongoing presence in the region, these are all costs that the american taxpayers are paying. where's the outrage on the other
side of the aisle about all that money that is built in to our reliance on foreign oil. this is money leaving our country never to be seen again. not only are we sending money, but sending our young men and women to risk their lives for those barrels of oil. mr. connolly: if i might interject. when you said that i'm reminded what we went through a year ago this very summer where the volatility of the price of gasoline really hit the pocketbook of the average consumer. you want to talk about cost, it affected peoples' choices, vacations, commutes, affected discretionary travel in terms of shopping, seeing movies, because the cost of gasoline became prohibitive for so many of our citizens. that's a cost, too. mr. polis: they don't fluctuate. the quantities t