"Obama, after meeting Gore: “This is a matter of urgency and national security”"
E&E News PM reports on the meeting between PEBO, VPEJB, and the Nobel-Prize-winning VP:
“All three of us are in agreement that the time for delay is over,” Obama said. “The time for denial is over.”
He added, “We all believe what the scientists have been telling us for years now, that this is a matter of urgency and national security, and it has to be dealt with in a serious way. That is what I intend my administration to do.”
Obama has called for a cap-and-trade program that would cut U.S. greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020 and 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050.
I will post shortly a detailed analysis on why that 1990 target is no longer adequate. More on the meeting:
Obama and Democratic leaders are crafting a massive economic stimulus package that is expected to include energy efficiency and perhaps other energy provisions. And more broadly, they have tied their economic message to the idea that bolstering low-carbon energy sources and efficiency is a way to create scores of jobs.
“We have the opportunity now to create jobs all across this country in all 50 states to repower America, to redesign how we use energy and think about how we are increasing efficiency to make our economy stronger, make us more safe, reduce our dependence on foreign oil and make us competitive for decades to come even as we save the planet,” Obama said.
He pledged that his White House would work with “a whole host of stakeholders” on the issue, including Gore, members of both parties, business leaders, consumers and others. His approach, he said, would be “aggressive.”
“So I am grateful to Vice President Gore that he has shared the information that he has with us,” Obama said. “And I am looking forward to a busy next couple of years getting our arms around this issue.”
News of the meeting had prompted renewed speculation that Gore, arguably the world’s most prominent advocate of aggressively combating global warming, might join the Obama administration in some capacity to address energy and climate issues. But Gore has said repeatedly that he is not planning to re-enter government, a view his spokeswoman reiterated this week.
Obama is expected to announce his nominees for environmental and energy positions soon.
Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm (D) is visiting Washington, D.C., tomorrow to discuss energy policy with Obama’s transition team. She will also meet with members of the state’s congressional delegation about aid to struggling automakers and the upcoming economic stimulus package, a spokeswoman said.
Granholm has been frequently mentioned as a possible choice for Energy secretary. Granholm spokeswoman Liz Boyd said that “the focus of the governor’s visit tomorrow is a policy visit.”
“The governor has been asked repeatedly about a possible appointment in an Obama administration, and the governor has said repeatedly she is looking forward to serving as governor with a partner in the White House,” Boyd said.