Obama has been consistent and, at times, vocal about his support for climate action. He earned much respect from environmentalist circles with his climate and energy plan. The Obama Plan introduces a cap-and-trade system that aims for 80 percent emission reductions from 1990 levels by 2050 and calls for auctioning 100 percent of the pollution permits. Obama also calls for a large scale investment in clean energy and promises to create "green jobs". However, how much of his proposed action plan will be carried to reality is yet be witnessed in the times ahead.
Below is a brief list of highlights from the Obama approach on energy and environment:
- Decrease dependence on foreign oil and increase domestic oil production
- Reducing oil consumption by 35% in order to compensate for the oil imports from OPEC nations
- Encourage use of alternative energy resources which rely on biofuel
- Impose tax increase on oil companies
- Maintain a well-balanced and responsible ethanol policy in the face of the emerging food crisis
- Moderately support enactment of nuclear power plants
- Promote production of hybrid cars and other electric-drive vehicles
- Increase fuel efficiency standards
- Shift away from petroleum towards cleaner and cheaper electricity for transportation
- Establish an auction-based cap-and-trade mechanism for emissions trading in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
- Establish a target of 80% reduction in GHG emissions below 1990 levels by 2050 by creating a market-based cap-and-trade system.
- Create “Green Collar Jobs” by investing in a clean energy future.
- Oppose drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge as well nuclear waste storage at the Yucca Mountain repository in southern Nevada.
Written by Zeynep Basak 2008. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without the author's permission.