May 15th, 2007
With the start of the summer driving season just a couple of weeks away, President George W. Bush will seek to gain momentum for his plan to cut U.S. gasoline consumption by 20% over the next 10 years.
Bush will make an announcement on energy issues from the Rose Garden at 1:25 p.m. (EDT) on Monday to “announce his latest effort to ensure that the nation is taking aggressive steps to reduce gasoline consumption and to reduce dependence on foreign energy sources,” White House spokesman Tony Snow said Monday. “He will ask the administration to start implementing the 20-in-10 plan through regulatory action. At the same time he will continue to urge Congress to pass legislation to advance the goal.”
The national average for regular gasoline is now above $3 per gallon, so lawmakers are renewing their vows to crack down on price gouging. Last week, lawmakers said they want to look into whether OPEC, oil-industry mergers, and a lack of refining capacity are behind the rising prices.
In March, President Bush called on Congress to pass energy legislation by Memorial Day. The White House sent lawmakers a draft bill to change the current renewable fuel standard to an alternative fuel standard and reform Corporate Average Fuel Economy, or CAFE, standards for cars. Both are key parts of the administration’s strategy to boost the supply of renewable and alternative fuels to 35 billion gallons by 2017 and lower gasoline consumption.
Secretary of Transportation Mary Peters, Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns, EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson and Deputy Secretary of Energy Clay Sell will brief reporters after Bush’s announcement Monday.