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January 27, 2010
11:19 PM

State of the Union Response from the Center for Biological Diversity

WASHINGTON - January 27 - The Center for Biological Diversity issued the following statement today from Executive Director Kierán Suckling in response to President Obama’s State of the Union Address, in which the President expressed support for climate legislation and creating clean energy jobs, but also paradoxically called for increased fossil fuel production.

“The President is correct that we need energy innovation and clean energy jobs to solve the climate crisis and invigorate our economy.  But a clean energy economy does not include continued reliance on dirty coal and further risky drilling for oil in fragile offshore areas.  We cannot solve the problem with business as usual, but instead need the change that Candidate Obama promised.

“The president failed tonight, as he failed over the past twelve months, to use his bully pulpit to advocate a bright line goal for greenhouse gas reductions.  Scientists have determined that reducing carbon pollution to 350 parts per million (ppm) is necessary to preserve a livable planet.  350 ppm must be the bottom line for all climate and energy policies.  The President already has the tools he needs under the Clean Air Act to begin the required pollution reductions.  It is just common sense that new climate legislation must add new tools to get the job done faster, building upon, and not rolling back, our foundation of successful environmental laws like the Clean Air Act. 

“Setting binding science-based limits on U.S. carbon pollution through the existing Clean Air Act is the best and quickest way to address the climate crisis and ensure that America does not fall behind in innovation and opportunity.

At the Center for Biological Diversity, we believe that the welfare of human beings is deeply linked to nature - to the existence in our world of a vast diversity of wild animals and plants. Because diversity has intrinsic value, and because its loss impoverishes society, we work to secure a future for all species, great and small, hovering on the brink of extinction. We do so through science, law, and creative media, with a focus on protecting the lands, waters, and climate that species need to survive.

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