MINNEAPOLIS – A comprehensive strategy to get off oil can reduce oil dependence in Minnesota by 1.13 billion gallons. In Minnesota alone, these savings would equal two and half times the amount that could be created by expanding dangerous deepwater drilling in the Atlantic and Pacific, according to a new report released today by Environment Minnesota.
“It is time to declare our independence from oil,” said Ken Bradley, Environment Minnesota Program Director.
“The cost of our oil dependence has grown out of control, from the outrageous price we pay at the pump, to the pollution of the air that we breathe, to catastrophic accidents like the Gulf Oil Spill and our contribution to global warming. Today’s report shows how we can get Minnesota closer to the day when we will no longer fear the impact of Big Oil on our paychecks, our environment, and public health.”
Environment Minnesota was joined by State Rep. Frank Hornstein, D.F.L. Party Lead for the Transportation and Finance Committee, who said, “Minnesota imports more than 20 billion dollars of dirty energy each year which harms our economy and our environment. The policies recommended in the report include setting fuel efficiency standards that make 60-mpg cars the norm by 2025, enacting a Clean Fuels Standard that will stimulate billions in investment in electric vehicles and advanced fuel technologies, doubling access to public transportation, and enacting policies to encourage telecommuting, smart growth, and biking and walking are just good common sense.”
Ken Bradley went on to say: “A hundred years of energy and transportation policies that favor Big Oil companies have made our state and our country deeply dependent on their dirty and dangerous product. Breaking their grip over our country is going to take time and the sustained commitment of policymakers and advocates, which is why we need to start now.”
Environment Minnesota called on leaders at both the state and federal level to enact comprehensive plans to reduce oil consumption. Last week, Sen. Jeff Merkley (Ore.) was joined by Sens. Tom Carper (Del.), Tom Udall (N.M.), and Michael Bennet (Colo.), in introducing the “Oil Independence for a Stronger America Act.” Click here to read the Senate release.
Rep. Hornstein acknowledged: “Across the political spectrum, Minnesotans understand the importance of getting Minnesota off oil. Working together, we can put this country on the path to independence from oil and create a country that is cleaner, stronger, and healthier than ever before.”
State Rep. Frank Hornstein and Environment Minnesota Director Ken Bradley are available for interviews by phone or in person by request at the phone numbers included above.