U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich have voted against a bill mandating approval of the Keystone XL Pipeline.
Udall said it was an unprecedented act for Congress to require the administration to approve a pipeline for a private, foreign corporation.
The vote came shortly after Udall offered an amendment to create a national Renewable Electricity Standard, which would require utilities to generate 25 percent of their electricity from renewable sources by 2025. His amendment received bipartisan support from almost half the Senate, demonstrating significant support for a forward-looking energy policy.
Udall released the following statement:
“For the last three weeks, the Senate has debated a bill that asks Congress to do something that is unprecedented – mandate a pipeline for a private, foreign corporation. The Keystone XL Pipeline is an investment in doing things the old way. I believe we need a ‘do it all, do it right’ energy strategy, and I’m deeply disappointed that we missed a chance to set a comprehensive energy policy that would maximize our energy potential while strengthening our economy and our energy security. Instead of doubling down on foreign oil, we should be talking about how we can invest in energy independence and jobs of the future.
“Today, I offered an amendment that would set a national Renewable Electricity Standard that would combat global warming while creating hundreds of thousands of jobs across the country. New Mexico and over half the states have wildly successful policies. I was pleased to receive the support of Republican Senators from a diverse array of states. The vote shows there is strong support for an energy policy that invests in traditional and renewable energy, and I’ll keep working for a comprehensive change that moves our nation forward.”
“Tar sands are not the right choice to meet our future energy needs. Instead of focusing on the past, which the Keystone XL Pipeline represents, we need to look to the future of clean energy technologies and the domestic jobs they support. Our national energy policy should be focused on two fundamental principles, fewer imports and cleaner fuels. Developing Canada’s tar sands flunks both these tests. My position against tar sand development is about taking the science of climate change and risk analysis seriously, and that the smarter investments are in the low-carbon and sustainable fuels of the future.”