Earth Day

April 22, 2007
Earth Day Home Today is Earth Day, giving our country an opportunity to focus on the key challenges facing us in preserving our planet. House Democrats belive that, by focusing on rapidly expanding the production of clean, alternative energy and reducing our use of oil, our country can both reduce global warming and make America more energy independent.

In addition to launching the Green Capitol Initiative for the entire U.S. Capitol, including operating the House in a carbon neutral manner, the Speaker's Office is taking further steps to make our own offices more energy efficient to help protect the earth. We're replacing our light bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs, recycling our paper and bottles and cans, and turning off lights and appliances when not in use. We're encouraging public transportation, and keeping heating and cooling at a minimum.

Learn more about House Democratic actions on global warming and energy indepedence:

Created a Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming
For the first time, the House has created a Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming.  This select committee will play a key role in raising the visibility of energy independence and global warming, informing the Congress and the public, developing policy recommendations, and assuring we make real progress over the next two years.    

Passed A Bill to Reduce Oil Subsidies & Instead Invest in Clean, Alternative Energy
In the first 100 hours, the House passed H.R. 6 that would repeal $14 billion in subsidies given to Big Oil companies and shift those resources to investments in clean, alternative energy and energy efficiency.  These investments will create new, good-paying jobs, cut America's dependence on foreign oil, and curb global warming.  

Passed A Budget That Invests in Clean, Alternative Energy & Energy R&D
On March 29, the House passed a budget that makes investments in alternative energy a priority.  Specifically, the budget calls for investments in R&D on new, cutting-edge renewable energy technologies, as well as in more rapid deployment of existing renewable energy technologies.

Launched A "Green the Capitol" Initiative
On March 1, the House Democratic Leadership called upon the Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) of the House to develop a "Green the Capitol" initiative.  This initiative will reduce our energy consumption and develop sustainable practices for the U.S. Capitol and congressional office buildings.  Congress should set the highest standards for environmental stewardship and sustainable energy use.  The CAO's preliminary report will be delivered at the end of this week.

Promoting An Innovation Agenda that Includes R&D in Clean, Renewable Energy Sources 
This year, the House will be considering an Innovation Agenda, which is designed to ensure that America remains number one in the 21st century.  One key part of the Innovation Agenda is to ensure America continues to be a world leader in clean, alternative energy technologies.  For example, the House will consider a bill to create a new DARPA-like initiative to provide the talent and resources for the research and development of the next generation of revolutionary energy technologies.

Working on a Legislative Package Promoting Energy Alternatives and Addressing Global Warming 
Several House committees are working to develop legislation to promote energy efficiency and clean energy alternatives by June 1st -- from the Energy and Commerce Committee to the Ways and Means Committee to the Science and Technology Committee and more.  The House will have a legislative package for July 4th that will represent a starting point on a new energy policy for America -- an energy policy that will take a significant step to reduce our energy dependence and address global warming.

Working on a Farm Bill With Major Provisions on Promoting Biofuels
The House will also consider a Farm Bill that will include provisions to increase the research, development and deployment of American-made biofuels as well as other renewable energy, energy efficiency and conservation programs.  This bill will provide a real plan to energize the nation, calling on American farmers to fuel our energy independence. 

Long-term Committment to Addressing Global Warming and Energy Independence 
Throughout the rest of 2007 and 2008, House committees will continue to hold hearings, collect the best scientific information on global warming and on new clean alternative energy sources, and develop legislation to tackle the difficult challenges posed by global warming and  achieving energy independence.