Statement by Karen Wayland, NRDC Legislative Director

WASHINGTON (July 19, 2005) -- The House-Senate Energy Conference Committee today rejected an amendment by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) that would have raised vehicle fuel standards by one mile per gallon each year for the next ten years. This followed the conference committee's removal of language from the Senate energy bill that called for saving one million barrels of oil per day. These actions, coupled with failed efforts during both the House and Senate energy bill debates to enact other oil savings measures, beg the question: What is the point of an energy bill that makes America less secure by failing to reduce our dependence on oil?

The following is a statement by Karen Wayland, NRDC's Legislative Director:

"Congress is missing the point about oil security. Why else would lawmakers even consider passing energy legislation that does nothing to save oil?

"Everyone knows that it's not enough to simply talk about the need to reduce oil dependence. Americans expect action.

"Sen. Wyden put forward a common-sense measure that would make us more secure.

"But as it stands, the energy bill will prolong -- and possibly worsen -- our oil dependence.

"Since it won't help us save oil, this bill is a waste of energy."