Bush to Call for Sharp Cuts in Gasoline Use

The president is proposing to set the amount of ethanol and other alternative fuels that must be blended into the fuel supply at 35 billion gallons by 2017.

Published: 23-Jan-2007

WASHINGTON — President Bush, in his first State of the Union address since Democrats took control of Congress, is calling on Americans tonight to cut their consumption of gasoline by 20% within 10 years.

Bush, in a speech emphasizing domestic issues over Iraq, plans to say that the gasoline reductions can be met mainly by increasing sharply the use of ethanol and other alternative fuels, Joel Kaplan, White House deputy chief of staff, told reporters in a briefing.

Kaplan says the president is proposing to set the amount of ethanol and other alternative fuels that must be blended into the fuel supply at 35 billion gallons by 2017, up from 7.5 billion gallons in 2012. He also wants to expand the standard to include not just ethanol but a wide range of oil alternatives, such as biodiesel, methanol, butanol and hydrogen, Kaplan said.

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The worst two scenarios suggest a drastic decline in output to 875,000 barrels a day by the end of 2007 and to just 520,000 a day by the end of 2008.

Bush said he envisioned a future in which a plug-in hybrid car could drive 40 miles on a lithium-ion battery, then stop at a filling station for ethanol, a fuel usually made from corn, similar to HyMotion Prius pictured below.

The following is a transcript of remarks by the President at a panel on energy conservation and efficiency at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Golden, Colorado:

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