June 12th, 2007
07:00 PM ET
12 years ago

Obama takes a page from Arnold

Obama addressed his bill calling for a National Low-Carbon Fuel Standard Tuesday.

ATLANTA, Georgia (CNN) – While campaigning in Los Angeles, California Tuesday, Senator Barack Obama, D-Illinois, stopped at a gas station that offered alternative fuel to address his bill calling for a National Low-Carbon Fuel Standard.

The White House contender showed up at the gas station – the second in California in the process of offering E85, ethanol-based fuel – in a government car without a flexible fuel tank that can run on ethanol, but he stressed that if president, he would make sure things change, including the type of cars federal employees drive.

“The debate about whether or not climate change is a man-made disaster is over. The question now is what we do about it,” said Obama. “We know that transportation fuels account for a third of America’s global warming pollution. And we know there are fuels available that emit less carbon-dioxide into the atmosphere – fuels like biodiesel and ethanol.”

Modeled in part after California’s proposed Low-Carbon Fuel Standard, Senator Obama introduced the legislation last month with Senator Tom Harkin, D-Iowa. The federal proposal would require that all transportation fuels sold in the U.S. contain 5 percent less carbon by 2015 and 10 percent less carbon by 2020. He also asked that automakers more than double the fuel efficiency of U.S.

Obama added the importance of California as a “trend setting state. Demographically [California] reflects where America is moving. We need to speak to the issues that are so important to California.”

Last January, by executive order, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger established a Low-Carbon Fuel Standard statewide with the intent of sparking research in alternatives to oil and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

- CNN’s Political Assignment Editor Marissa Muller

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. kacz, Vashon WA

    What Barak isn't telling us is that corn-based ethanol represents a significant downstream ecological impact in terms of nitrogen loss in the soil, overuse of resources such as irrigation water, and a vast increase in the use of harmful fertilizer and pesticide chemicals.

    He is further remiss in mentioning that one of his big campaign contributors over the years has been ADM, the largest producer of ethanol in the world.

    Finally, Mr. Obama won't be telling you about the huge ($20B and up) farm and production subsidies that accrue to companies such as ADM in order to produce bio fuels.

    June 13, 2007 07:06 am at 7:06 am |
  2. Anonymous

    Evidently Obama is not aware of the many natural gas powered vehicles that the government uses. He also needs to do his homework on where this ethanol is going to come from. Cleaner, maybe less expensive gas or cheaper milk? You only get to pick one.

    June 13, 2007 07:48 am at 7:48 am |
  3. Steve, Indianapolis, IN

    I agree with the other posters on here. How dare Sen. Obama try to encourage fuel sources other than gasoline! Shame on him! Oh wait, what am I talking about...increasing our fuel flexibility is a good thing.

    By the way, I'm glad we're getting a lesson in farming from someone in Washington, the corn capital of the world!

    June 13, 2007 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  4. DJ, Los Angeles

    Interesting that Obama is actually getting criticism for trying to do the right thing.

    He said that he wanted to advocate that automakers "more than double the fuel efficiency (of U.S. vehicles).

    How does THAT help Archer Daniels Midland?

    Besides the goal should be to control our own energy supply...NOT OPEC.

    Good for Obama, has a specific plan to address a national security issue...unlike most of the other candidates.

    June 13, 2007 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |