Geenspan Echoes Carper Call for National Energy Policy

WASHINGTON, DC – Federal Reserve Board Chairman Alan Greenspan today agreed with Senator Tom Carper’s call for a national energy policy to improve our economy and improve our nation’s energy security. While the full Senate continued to debate the energy bill, Carper questioned Greenspan during the Chairman’s appearance before the Senate Banking Committee. “Our oil imports are approaching sixty percent of what we consume. Our trade deficit last year was 300 billion – much of that is oil that we import from people who are not friendly to America. Now is the time to pass a national energy policy,” Carper said. He then asked Greenspan about “the implications for our economy going forward because of our failure to adopt an energy policy that both produces and conserves more energy.” Greenspan, who appeared before the committee to give his semi-annual report on monetary policy, said he shared Carper’s view about the urgent need for action and urged the Congress to take an expansive view in the issues they must address. “The longer-term outlook for energy is a crucial element in any view of where this economy is going over the next 10, 15, 20 years,” Greenspan said. “The issue of conservation, the issue of sources of production, our import strategy, our environmental strategy, are all part of an integrated strategy which the congress has got to address in total.” Carper, who received a special appointment to the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, has been working through that committee to secure increased support for alternate fuels like diesel made from soybeans, which clean up emissions and offer a new market for Delaware soybean farmers; increased emphasis on renewable energy sources including solar power, wind, and biomasses like poultry litter; a reduction in our dependence on foreign oil to better ensure energy safety; increased funding for Low Income Home Energy Assistance and weatherization grants to states; and increased attention to the development of fuel cells, which both DuPont and W.L. Gore plan to manufacture.