Mitt Romney on Energy & Oil

Former Republican Governor (MA)

Compensate Nevada for nuclear waste in Yucca Mountain

Q: [to Paul]: Do you support opening the national nuclear repository at Yucca Mountain?

PAUL: I've opposed this. I approach it from a state's rights position. What right does 49 states have to punish one state and say, "We're going to put our garbage i your state"?

ROMNEY: I don't always agree with Rep. Paul, but I do on that. The idea that 49 states can tell Nevada, "We want to give you our nuclear waste," doesn't make a lot of sense. I think the people of Nevada ought to have the final say as to whether they want that, and my guess is that for them to say yes to something like that, someone's going to have to offer them a pretty good deal, as opposed to having the federal government jam it down their throat. And if Nevada says, "Look, we don't want it," then let other states make bids and say, hey, look, we'll take it; here's the compensation we want for taking it. Let the free market work. And where the people say the deal's a good one will decide where we put this stuff.

Source: GOP 2011 primary debate in Las Vegas , Oct 18, 2011

Climate change is occurring, with SOME human contribution

I believe that climate change is occurring--the reduction in the size of global ice caps is hard to ignore. I also believe that human activity is a contributing factor.

I am uncertain how much of the warming, however, is attributable to man and how muc is attributable to factors out of our control. I do not support radical feel-good policies like a unilateral US cap-and-trade mandate. Such policies would have little effect on the climate but could cripple economic growth.

Oil is purported to be one of the primary contributors to rising global temperatures. If in fact global warming is importantly caused by our energy appetite, it's yet one more reason for going on an energy diet.

Scientists are nearly unanimous in laying the blame for rising temperatures on greenhouse gas emissions. Of course there are also reasons for skepticism. The earth may be getting warmer, but there have been numerous times in the earth's history when temperatures have been warmer than they are now.

Source: No Apology, by Mitt Romney, p.227 , Mar 2, 2010

No-regrets policy at home; reduce greenhouse emission abroad

As nations like China and India make available to their citizens the automobiles and appliances that we take for granted in the West, their energy demands--and their emissions--will rise dramatically. If developing nations won't curb emissions, even extreme mitigation measures taken by the US and other developed nations will have no appreciable effect on slowing the rate of greenhouse gas emissions.

These considerations lead me to this: We would pursue a no-regrets policy at home, and we should continue to engage in global efforts--not just US & European efforts--to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions. By no regrets, I mean that we ought to take unilateral action on emissions when doing so is also consistent with our objective for reducing our dependence on foreign oil.

Internationally, we should work to limit the increase in emissions in greenhouse gases, but in doing so, we shouldn't put ourselves in a disadvantageous economic position that penalizes American jobs and economic growth.

Source: No Apology, by Mitt Romney, p.230-231 , Mar 2, 2010

Nuclear power is a win-win: no CO2 and no imports

As nations like China and India make available to their citizens the automobiles, home heaters, air conditioners and appliances that we take for granted in the West, their energy demands--and their emissions--will rise dramatically. Internationally, we should work to limit the increase in emissions in global greenhouse gases.

Whether global warming or energy security is one's primary concern, everyone agrees that finding substitute fuels for oil is a good thing.

Nuclear power is a win-win; it's a domestic energy source with zero greenhouse emissions. Nuclear power poses the single largest opportunity to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions. Without increased nuclear generation, global temperatures cannot achieve the two-degree Celsius goal. So if you're serious about global warming, you have to say yes to nuclear; and if like me you're serious about energy security, you get to the same place.

Source: No Apology, by Mitt Romney, p.230&239-240 , Mar 2, 2010

They don’t call it “America warming” but “global warming”

When you put in place a new cap or a mandate, and particularly if you don’t have any safety valve as to how much the cost of that cap might be, you would impose on the American people, if you do it unilaterally, without involving all the world, you’d impose on the American people a huge new effective tax: 20% on utilities, 50 cents a gallon for gasoline--that’s according to the energy information agency--would be imposed on us. What happens if you do that? You put a big burden on energy in this country as the energy-intensive industries say, “We’re going to move our new facilities from the US to China, where they don’t have those agreements.” You end up polluting and putting just as much CO2 in the air because the big energy users go there. That’s why these ideas make sense, but only on a global basis. They don’t call it “America warming.” They call it “global warming.” That’s why you’ve got to have a president that understands the real economy.
Source: 2008 Republican debate at Reagan Library in Simi Valley , Jan 30, 2008

Opposes McCain-Lieberman bill due to $0.50/gal. gas tax

One of the things I find extraordinary is that Sen. McCain pushes this bill known as McCain-Lieberman. It is effectively a tax on all energy in this country. It would raise gasoline prices by about 50 cents a gallon, and that is according to the Energy Information Agency. He would raise electric rates by some 20%, put a huge burden on us.

And it basically would slow down our economy without helping the environment at all, because major users of energy would take their production to countries like China that wouldn’t sign the deal.

It is basically saying the cost of global warming would all be borne by American rate-payers and consumers. He just doesn’t understand how the economy works.

Source: CNN Late Edition: 2008 presidential series with Wolf Blitzer , Jan 27, 2008

$20 billion package for energy research & new car technology

Q: You pledged to offer a $20 billion package to help out the auto industry with energy research and new technology. One conservative columnist wrote, “Is that what a Republican should do, bail out a private industry?” Are you going to offer billions of taxpayer dollars to every industry that’s in trouble in this country?

A: We spend about $4 billion a year right now on energy research to try and help us become less energy dependent on foreign sources. And I think over the coming years we need to increase our investment to become energy independent from about $4 billion a year to about $20 billion a year. Obviously, that has got to grow gradually because there are not a lot of places now that do the kind o research we need to do to get ourselves energy independent. But that’s not just to bail out the automobile industry. That’s not what I have in mind. I’m not looking for a bailout at all. Instead, it’s saying that where we invest, we tend to do very well.

Source: 2008 Fox News interview: “Choosing the President” series , Jan 20, 2008

Need worldwide global warming solutions; not CAFE or US tax

Q: What about the domestic auto industry?

A: Look at Washington. They gave it CAFE standards, which hurt. Some Senators are talking about a new form of tax on energy in this country, which would make it even harder on the domestic companies.

Q: Well, their point is that you have got to do something about global warming. Isn’t that your understanding?

A: Oh, sure. And there’s nothing wrong with dealing with global warming. But there is a big difference between talking about global warming, which requires global solutions, and the idea of America warming. No one talks about America warming. If we’re going to have solutions that deal, for instance, with a cap in trade program or a BTU tax or anything of that nature, it has to be global in its sweep. But Sen. McCain’s proposition is that we do this as America only. A unilateral effort would only cause higher costs here, and give the advantage to nations that already have a substantial cost advantage.

Source: CNN Late Edition: 2008 presidential series with Wolf Blitzer , Jan 13, 2008

Invest in new technologies to get us off of foreign oil

Confronting climate change is going to help our economy because we’re going to invest in new technologies to get ourselves off of foreign oil, and as we get ourselves off of foreign oil, we also dramatically reduce our CO2 emissions. That’s good for the environment; it’s also good for our economy. Because $300 to $400 billion worth of oil a year from other people who use it against us, that’s bad for our economy, it’s also bad for the environment. We can do these things in a way that help both the environment and the economy and national security. Is global warming an issue for the world? Absolutely. Is it something we can deal with by becoming energy independent and energy secure? We sure can. At the same time, we call it global warming, not America warming. So let’s not put a burden on us alone and have the rest of the world skate by without having to participate in this effort. It’s a global effort, but our independence is something we can do unilaterally.
Source: 2007 Des Moines Register Republican Debate , Dec 12, 2007

Develop energy technology like nuclear or liquefied coal

We face serious competitive challenges globally unless we become serious with getting prices of energy down. It’s a great opportunity for America to develop technology to lead the world in energy efficiency as well as energy production. And whether it’s nuclear or liquefied coal, where we sequester the CO2, far more fuel-efficient automobiles. These are some of the incentives that have to be behind our policies with regards to our investments in new technologies like ethanol.
Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan , Oct 9, 2007

The time for true energy independence has come

“America must become energy independent. We must finally take the necessary steps to actually produce as much energy as we use. This may take twenty years or more. True energy independence will requiring energy employing technology to make our use of energy more efficient, in our cars, in our homes, and in our businesses.”

“I will initiate a bold and far-reaching research initiative--an Energy Revolution. It will be our generation’s equivalent of the Manhattan Project or of the mission to reach the Moon.“

”While scientists are still debating how much human activity impacts the environment, we can all agree that alternative energy sources will be good for the planet. For any and all for these reasons, the time for true energy independence has come.“

Source: The Man, His Values, & His Vision, p.112-113 , Aug 31, 2007

Exporting carbon emissions to China hurts US and planet

On Global Warming: “I want to make sure we don’t do something which costs hundreds of billions of dollars in this country and makes us less competitive with China and India. If carbon-emitting manufacturing moves to other countries, we’ve done nothing for the planet and we’ve hurt ourselves immeasurably.
Source: The Man, His Values, & His Vision, p.113 , Aug 31, 2007

No-regrets policy: biofuel, nuclear power, drill ANWR

Q: Is science wrong on global warming? And what, if any, steps would you take as president to address the issue of climate change?

GIULIANI: I think we have to accept the view that scientists have that there is global warming and that humans contribute to that. It’s frustrating and really dangerous for us to see money going to our enemies because we have to buy oil from certain countries. We should be supporting all the alternatives. We need a project similar to putting a man on the moon.

ROMNEY: Rudy Giuliani is right in terms of an Apollo project to get us energy independent, and the effects of that on global warming are positive. It’s a no-regrets policy. It’s a great idea. [We need,] as a strategic imperative, energy independence for America. And it takes that Apollo project. It also takes biodiesel, biofuel, cellulosic ethanol, nuclear power, more drilling in ANWR. We have to be serious also about efficiency and that’s going to allow us to become energy independent.

Source: 2007 GOP debate at Saint Anselm College , Jun 3, 2007

Big Oil should reinvest profits in oil refineries

Q: What do you say to the audience who believes that there’s too much of an alliance between the big oil companies and Republicans?

A: Big oil is making a lot of money right now, and I’d like to see them using that money to invest in refineries. Don’t forget that when companies earn profit, that money is supposed to be reinvested in growth. And our refineries are old. Someone said our refineries today are rust with paint holding them up. And we need to see these companies, if they’re making that kind of money, reinvest in capital equipment. But let’s not forget, where the money is being made throughout these years is not just in the major oil companies, it’s in the countries that own this oil. Ahmadinejad, Putin, Chavez--these people are getting rich off of people buying too much oil. And that’s why we have to pursue, as a strategic imperative, energy independence for America.

Source: 2007 GOP debate at Saint Anselm College , Jun 3, 2007

Develop alternative energy but also drill in ANWR

To remain the economic and military superpower, America must address achieving energy independence. We must become independent from foreign sources of oil. This will mean a combination of efforts related to conservation and efficiency measures, developing alternative sources of energy like biodiesel, ethanol, nuclear, and coal gasification, and finding more domestic sources of oil such as in ANWR or the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS).
Source: PAC website, www.TheCommonwealthPac.com, “Meet Mitt” , Dec 1, 2006

Can’t become energy independent in a decade, but be on track

We’re going to have to deal with this in an honest way with the American people, and that is this is not something that’s going to get solved in 10 years. We can’t become energy independent in 10 years, but we can get ourselves on a track to do that. It’s going to require a far more substantial investment by our nation in energy technology. Right now, we spend about $4 billion a year on new sources of energy and energy efficiency. We’re going to have to increase that dramatically. And American corporations, last year they spent more money defending tort lawsuits than they spent on research and development. We’re upside-down. The future of a great nation like ours depends on leading the world in technology & innovation, in energy in particular. This has to be our highest domestic economic priority, get ourselves on a track to become energy secure & energy independent. It’s within our grasp. But it’s going to take reality rather than just the political rhetoric we’ve seen over the last 25 years.
Source: 2008 Facebook/WMUR-NH Republican primary debate , Jan 5, 2006

Other governors on Energy & Oil: Mitt Romney on other issues:
MA Gubernatorial:
Deval Patrick
MA Senatorial:
John Kerry
Scott Brown

Newly seated 2010:
NJ Chris Christie
VA Bob McDonnell

Term-limited as of Jan. 2011:
AL Bob Riley
CA Arnold Schwarzenegger
GA Sonny Perdue
HI Linda Lingle
ME John Baldacci
MI Jennifer Granholm
NM Bill Richardson
OK Brad Henry
OR Ted Kulongoski
PA Ed Rendell
RI Donald Carcieri
SC Mark Sanford
SD Mike Rounds
TN Phil Bredesen
WY Dave Freudenthal
Newly Elected Nov. 2010:
AL: Robert Bentley (R)
CA: Jerry Brown (D)
CO: John Hickenlooper (D)
CT: Dan Malloy (D)
FL: Rick Scott (R)
GA: Nathan Deal (R)
HI: Neil Abercrombie (D)
IA: Terry Branstad (R)
KS: Sam Brownback (R)
ME: Paul LePage (R)
MI: Rick Snyder (R)
MN: Mark Dayton (D)
ND: Jack Dalrymple (R)
NM: Susana Martinez (R)
NV: Brian Sandoval (R)
NY: Andrew Cuomo (D)
OH: John Kasich (R)
OK: Mary Fallin (R)
PA: Tom Corbett (R)
RI: Lincoln Chafee (I)
SC: Nikki Haley (R)
SD: Dennis Daugaard (R)
TN: Bill Haslam (R)
VT: Peter Shumlin (D)
WI: Scott Walker (R)
WY: Matt Mead (R)
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Page last updated: Nov 23, 2011