Bush State of the Union address offers tepid energy initiatives

Today we have the high privilege and distinct honor of blurbing the State of the Union address. It was largely a muted, desultory affair, reflecting the fact that President Bush is trapped in a foreign quagmire, his Republican congressional bootlickers are abandoning him, and the public loathes him more than any president since Nixon. However! There were a few greenish moments. For the first time in a SOTU address, Bush said the dreaded words: “global climate change.” Guess that means it’s real. His splashy energy plan is to reduce U.S. gasoline use 20 percent in 10 years. Assuming this goal, unlike other SOTU goals, translates into action, it would mean modest increases in fuel efficiency standards and a massive increase in corn ethanol subsidies (shocking, we know). Sharp-eared listeners also noted that the Renewable Fuel Standard established in 2005 is now the Alternative Fuel Standard, to allow for coal-to-liquid fuels — which ain’t renewable in the least. Read all about it in Gristmill.