Alliance to Save Energy Offers Congress 10 Options How to Cut Oil Prices and Dependency

Release Date: Wednesday, March 1, 2000

Statement by David M. Nemtzow, President Alliance to Save Energy

"OPEC is, once again, back in the driver’s seat – and the reason is needless. America’s addiction and dependency to oil has increased demand and sent prices soaring. To lower oil prices, Congress must help Americans cut their oil use by promoting efficiency – not only at home, but also on the road, and in business. Efficiency is the only option."

Congress must cut oil waste immediately to cut prices. These are 10 ways Congress can do it:

  1. Unshackle auto fuel economy standards, encouraging the deployment of new gasoline-saving technology by automakers. Remove the anti-CAFE rider so our nation’s most successful oil import reduction policy can make further progress.
  2. Immediately end the fuel efficiency loophole for SUVs and light trucks. Hold them to stricter fuel economy standards.
  3. More funding to develop new energy-efficient technologies. President Clinton’s proposed research program, if funded, will help get these technologies to the marketplace.
  4. Double support for the Energy Star program. Let consumers choose highly efficient furnaces, windows and other products that use fuel oil frugally. Help small businesses find ways to cut their own oil use.
  5. Increase funding for the low-income weatherization assistance program. Create a special appropriations for oil heated homes, and modify program rules to allow higher spending for oil heated homes.
  6. Push the U.S. Department of Energy to end delays in finishing new regulations to improve the energy efficiency of residential and commercial heating equipment.
  7. Immediately pass H.R. 1358, introduced by Rep. Bill Thomas, R-CA, to provide tax credits for highly efficient homes, many of which use less than half the heating oil of a regular house.
  8. Pass S. 1369, introduced by Sen. Jim Jeffords, R-VT to restructure the electric utility industry, including a "public benefits fund" to support energy efficiency and renewable energy.
  9. Call on the Administration to implement its own Executive Order 13123 (promulgated by President Clinton, June 1999) to cut oil and energy use at the world’s largest energy consumer – the U.S. federal government.
  10. Immediately pass the Clinton-proposed tax credit for hybrid and alternatively fueled cars that use less – or no – gasoline or diesel. Create a credit for commercial and industrial oil fired boiler systems that encourages the use of insulation, controls, and other efficiency measures.