The oil disaster in the Gulf threatens hundreds of species, including the stunning Roseate spoonbill.
This unprecedented environmental catastrophe will take years and perhaps decades to repair. For some species, this may be a fatal blow.
Tell President Obama and Congress to hold oil companies accountable for the full extent of their pollution and urge them to unleash our clean energy future by capping America's carbon dioxide pollution.
With your help, we can set America on a new course that curbs our dependence on fossil fuels and promotes clean, renewable energy technologies.
The BP Gulf oil disaster is a human and ecological catastrophe of potentially unprecedented scope and scale. Even while we hold BP fully accountable to stop the leak and clean up the mess, we must take aggressive action now to prevent future spills and to unleash our clean energy future.
The first step is to make sure polluters are held accountable not just for the cost of cleaning up spills, but also for the cost to fully repair the damage to local economies and the environment. Under current law, financial liability for oil companies is capped at $75 million, a paltry sum that isn't even a down payment on the full costs of clean up and recovery. I urge you to support lifting the liability cap and to ensure that individual companies are held financially responsible for their own oil disasters.
Second, we must act now to ensure that this type of disaster never happens again. There are 4,000 offshore rigs and 35,000 miles of pipelines off America's Gulf Coast operating right now. We must require that the oil industry develop much stronger emergency response plans to respond much more quickly to oil spill disasters. Such a plan should include prepositioning tools, equipment, and trained personnel who can be deployed at a moment's notice to respond to oil emergencies and rapidly contain the devastation.
Finally, we must recognize that the economic and ecological toll of our dependence on fossil fuels has once again proven to be very steep. America must transition our energy economy to clean, reliable, renewable energy sources as quickly as possible. The Senate must do its part and pass a strong climate and energy bill now to unleash our clean energy future.
This Gulf oil disaster is a tragedy of epic proportions. It must serve as a wake up call for you and every member of Congress. We must do more to protect our environment and our economy from the enormous price of our heavy dependence on fossil fuels.
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