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Reds & Blues Go Green

Clean energy legislation most likely to bolster bipartisanship


Despite the exaggerated mudslinging in

Washington, D.C. lately—or rather because of it—Democrats and Republicans are searching for a bill to garner bipartisan support. The most likely candidate comes in the form of clean energy legislation. On March 22, Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.)

and 21 other moderate Democrats sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) calling for passage of clean energy legislation this year. The letter stated, “Our lack of a comprehensive clean energy policy hurts job creation and increases regulatory uncertainty throughout our economy…for established energy and manufacturing sectors, clean energy

incentives will deploy the next generation of technologies that preserve and grow jobs in those sectors as well.” One such bill has drawn much attention

and support since its introduction in April 2009. The New Alternative Transportation to Give Americans Solutions Act is the brainchild of Texas oilman T. Boone Pickens. The house version, H.R. 1835, has garnered 141 co-sponsors to date. Both the Senate and House versions

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mirror the Pickens Plan, the major component being to offer trucking companies a $65,000-100,000 federal tax credit to switch their trucks from diesel to compressed natural gas (CNG). Summarized into its basic components, the Pickens Plan promises energy


independence, less pollution, and cheaper fuel than the mostly imported diesel fuels. “We’ve relied on foreign oil for far too long,” Pickens said in a recent statement. “A game changer has emerged, and we’ve got to jump on it. If we don’t end our country’s dangerous dependence on foreign oil by passing the NAT GAS Act in the House (H.R. 1835) and the Senate (S. 1408), I can assure you the tide will go out on us before you know it.” Speaking at the National Natural Gas

Vehicle (NGV) Fleet Summit before the Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, Ken., Pickens predicted the bill to pass by Memorial Day this year. In a recent interview with John Stossel, Pickens defended his stance, saying U.S.

One of our trucks hit a deer, causing extensive front end damage. The Northland examinermet with us on the very day we filed the claimto inspect the truck, complete the damage estimate and arrange for repairs. The loss was settled in a couple days withminimal impact to our daily business, and we’re back on the road!

—Fleet manager


St. Paul,MN • Hartford, CT

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