Pork to the 435th Power

China moves to more stringent fuel efficiency standards while US moves in the opposite direction

Published: 21-Nov-2003

id=text>CHINESE LEADERS are worried about their nation's growing dependence on imported oil. What's more, pollution from such fossil fuels threatens to become a parallel concern as China's booming economy matures.

So they've hit upon an obvious energy strategy that has somehow eluded U.S. lawmakers: conservation.

In what should be an embarrassing juxtaposition for leaders here, China is moving to impose tighter fuel-efficiency rules on cars and SUVs than the U.S. requires, while Congress is adopting an opposite approach - boosting domestic production of fossil fuels to meet all-but-unchecked demand.

And yet, with payoffs of $23 billion in tax subsidies to most lawmakers' pet portions of the energy industry, there aren't nearly enough willing to stand up to this folly.

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