From REP America
Wednesday, March 19, 2003 12:00:00 AM
REP America, the national grassroots organization of Republicans for environmental protection, praised the Senate for voting today, 52-48, to remove budget resolution language that would have opened the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling.
"We are pleased that a majority of senators stood firm for protecting the incomparable Arctic refuge, a one-of-a-kind wilderness landscape. As America celebrates the 100th anniversary of our National Wildlife Refuge System, we are gratified that the Senate voted to keep America's largest refuge free of the noise, pollution, and loss of wildness that inevitably accompany oil drilling," REP America Policy Director Jim DiPeso said.
REP America praised the eight Republican senators who were key to securing a pro-conservation majority. "We are thankful that eight Republicans stuck with our party's conservation tradition and voted to keep the Arctic refuge unmarred for future generations," DiPeso said. The eight Republican senators included Lincoln Chafee (RI), Norm Coleman (MN), Susan Collins (ME), Mike DeWine (OH), Peter Fitzgerald (IL), John McCain (AZ), Gordon Smith (OR), and Olympia Snowe (ME).
Opening protected lands to oil drilling is the wrong way to secure clean, reliable, and affordable energy, DiPeso said. "We cannot achieve energy independence or reduce high energy prices by squandering our natural heritage. We call on Congress and President Bush to enact an energy policy that focuses on improving efficiency and diversifying into clean energy available here at home, including technologies producing electricity and fuels from the wind, sun, geothermal heat, the ocean, and farm and forestry products," DiPeso said.
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I am so pleased.