Dirty energy bills attack fundamental environmental protections from all sides

Vitter-Bishop bills underline single-minded drilling agenda


  • Bills introduced today in the House and Senate seek to rapidly accelerate the production of dirty fossil fuels, including opening up more sensitive areas off American coasts and in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to dangerous oil drilling, pushing lease sales of oil shale reserves, and reinstating Bush-era oil and gas leases on public lands
  • The bill also seeks to seriously undermine the Clean Air Act and the Endangered Species Act, two bedrock environmental laws that protect the health of Americans and our natural resources, by prohibiting the regulation of carbon dioxide, methane and other dangerous air pollutants
  • This Congressional drilling push comes on the heels of a speech by President Obama yesterday in which he outlined a long-term plan for the country to rein in its oil consumption and transition to a cleaner, more sustainable future
WASHINGTON (03/31/2011) -

The following is a statement from Rodger Schlickeisen, president and CEO of Defenders of Wildlife:

“Senator Vitter’s and Representative Bishop’s short-sighted dirty energy bills would take us backwards in the urgent national effort to chart a new and sustainable energy direction for the nation. The bills would sell out America’s lands and waters to the dirty energy industry, which – as demonstrated all too clearly during the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster less than a year ago – has little regard for the wellbeing of coastal communities, local economies, our precious wildlife or treasured natural places.

“The members of Congress bought and paid for by Big Oil are no longer even attempting to mask their single-minded drive for more dirty energy production. Instead, they’re putting the livelihoods of their constituents and the wellbeing of the environment at greater risk for what amounts to zero relief at the pump. We need real solutions, not ones that sacrifice the health of the American people, wildlife and natural resources so Big Oil can make even more obscene profits.”


Learn more about Defenders’ work to protect American coasts from offshore drilling disasters.

Defenders envisions a clean energy future that’s smart from the start. Learn more>>


Caitlin Leutwiler, (202) 772-3226, cleutwiler@defenders.org

You may also be interested in:

Polar bear, © Tom Schneider
Conservation Issue
Climate change is now one of the leading threats to wildlife. Find out what Defenders is doing to help animals around the country survive in a warming planet.
Fact Sheet
With a coat that changes color and thick fur even on their paws, Arctic foxes are well adapted to their habitat’s extreme cold.
walrus, © Joel Garlich-Miller/USFWS
Fact Sheet
The walrus is a large marine mammal with flippers, a broad head, short muzzle, small eyes, tusks and whiskers. Scientists recognize two subspecies of walrus – the Atlantic walrus and the Pacific walrus.