Congress and the Obama Administration are feeling the heat to adopt a new energy policy for the nation.
Tom Buis, Growth Energy CEO, says it's time for the U.S. to adopt a plan that moves the nation away from petroleum. Buis says the recent renewable energy plan unveiled by Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack is a good start and provides a plan for moving forward.
Without a plan Buis says the U.S. will slip backwards as it has during all the other energy crises over the past 40 years. He says election year politics must take a back seat to solving long-standing energy issues.
"Politics in Washington is very partisan right now," Buis said. "What we need more than anything is for leaders to step up and say it's time to move forward and do and energy bill an do it this year. Don't wait until the next crisis comes along, let's take the steps today. There is a lot of things that can be done immediately that puts our nation on a course to having a comprehensive energy security plan but it's going to require action."
Growth Energy Co-Chairman General Wesley Clark says there is bipartisan support for renewable fuels in the Midwest, but not in other parts of the nation. Secretary Vilsack agrees and says it's important to ensure lawmakers from the coast states understand that renewable fuels will benefit their states, too.
As for the EPA, Clark says he expects they will increase the amount of ethanol blended into the gas supply by September. But he says energy reform is more than just using more ethanol in our cars.
"We need to go beyond the E15," Clark said. "We really need a biofuels policy that follows the Renewable Fuel Act of 2007 because we can actually grow our way out of depending on imported oil."