Much of the business community and many political leaders are way ahead the President on global warming

Change is in the air.

President Bush said the words "climate change" tonight, marking the first time that he has mentioned this urgent environmental threat in a State of the Union speech.

Obviously we need more - and there is more.

His prescription for action – calling on America to produce upwards of 35 billion gallons of biofuels by 2017 and to improve auto fuel efficiency – is significant.

If channeled in the right directions, it would result in nearly a five-fold increase in biofuel production, help spur capital investments in low carbon fuels and reduce America's gasoline consumption.

That would be a good start.

However, President Bush is missing a huge opportunity to support an economy-wide national cap on America's global warming pollution. Without a cap, his proposal falls well short of comprehensive and effective global warming action.

As this list of recent events makes clear, there has never been more energy behind our global warming campaign. Taken together, these events represent unprecedented momentum in our fight for meaningful global warming action:

* Yesterday, Environmental Defense joined 10 major U.S. businesses and 3 other environmental groups to urge swift national action to cut America's global warming pollution;

* As many as 7 global warming bills have been or are expected to be introduced in the Senate in the coming weeks;

* Congressional Committee and Subcommittee Chairs in both the House and Senate are scheduling dozens of hearings on global warming solutions in the next several weeks;

* House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced last week that she is creating a special select committee on global warming solutions;

* The House of Representatives voted last week to reallocate energy subsidies from oil and natural gas industries to invest in renewable energy technologies;

* California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger announced a low carbon fuel standard to cut carbon dioxide emissions by 10% in all fuels sold in California by 2020;

* All leading major party presidential candidates are on record supporting strong national global warming action;

* According to news accounts, the upcoming report from the International Panel on Climate Change is expected to use the strongest language yet linking global warming pollution to rising temperatures;

* At least 8 governors have mentioned global warming in their State of the States, including Gov. Mark Sanford (R-SC), who called for a state level climate change stakeholders' conference.

These developments suggest that the people, much of the business community and many political leaders are way ahead the President on global warming. We need to capitalize on this progress, and build on this momentum to make 2007 the year when we finally turn the corner.

We must keep up constant support for an economy-wide cap on global warming pollution. And with your continued support, we will.

That's our end game for 2007.

Stay tuned, and thanks for everything,

Steve Cochran
Campaign Director
Global Warming


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