Sensenbrenner: Sweden Offers Lessons on Energy Independence

May 15, 2007

Sensenbrenner: Sweden Offers Lessons on Energy Independence

Washington, D.C., May 15 - U.S. Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., ranking Republican on the House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming, made the following statement during today's briefing titled, "Perspectives on Energy and Climate Change: Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt of Sweden:"

"I want to thank Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt for taking the time to share with us Sweden's experience with climate change and energy independence.

"Long before today's international focus on the global warming issue, Sweden made the policy decision not to heavily rely on foreign-supplied fossil fuels for its energy future. Instead, Sweden turned to nuclear and hydropower for most of its electricity needs.

"As a result, Sweden has seen reductions in its greenhouse gas emissions. Furthermore, by relying on nuclear and hydroelectricity, Sweden is far less dependent on foreign sources of oil than America. Mr. Prime Minister, in the United States, we call that a 'win-win.'

"With gas prices rising higher and higher in the U.S., we Americans are anxious to become more energy independent ourselves.

"Global warming is a global issue and as we look for solutions, I think it's important to see what works in other countries. It looks like nuclear and hydropower is working in Sweden, and I'm anxious to hear from the prime minister about how these and other technologies can reduce carbon emissions and reliance on foreign energy sources. Many of my colleagues believe, like I do, that climate change policy has to promote development of new technology if it is to have a significant impact.

"Mr. Prime Minister, I'm concerned that the United States may overreact to what science is telling us about global warming and enact policies that do little to improve the environment while causing significant harm to our economy.

"I also worry that if China and India aren't part of the solution, these rapidly-growing nations will emit enough greenhouse gases to effectively undo any progress made by countries that are reducing their greenhouse gas emissions.

"I hope the prime minister will share with us some thoughts about how Sweden, the European Union and the U.S. can persuade the Indians and Chinese to become more involved in the solutions. It would be hard for me and many of my colleagues to support any significant global warming policy that doesn't include China and India.

"With that, I want to thank the prime minister again for being here and look forward to hearing his thoughts on these important issues."

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Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming - Republicans
H2-344 Ford House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515
Phone: (202) 225-0110 | Fax: (202) 225-0095

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