President Bush, in Tuesday’s State of the Union address, will propose a plan to cut U.S. gasoline consumption by 20 percent while bolstering inventory in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, Republican sources say. The president’s 10-year plan to cut gasoline use includes tightening fuel economy standards on automakers and producing 35 billion gallons of renewable fuel such as ethanol by 2017, according to sources briefed on the speech. One official said the moves would be equivalent to taking 26 million vehicles off U.S. roads. Full CNN story. While this is great to see, it is a complete reversal of previous views held by Bush: In May of 2001 White House Press Secretary Ari Fleischer was asked if Americans needed to change their lifestyle in order to reduce a world record per capita energy consumption. Mr. Fleisher replied, “That’s a big no. The President believes that it’s an American way of life, and that it should be the goal of policy makers to protect the American way of life.” The alt energy blogosphere has been abuzz over the past week with predictions of what sectors and stocks could benefit from this gradual turnaround initiated with the 2006 State of the Union Address. Now we’re getting an early glimpse at the darling sectors. For anyone who’s been following this for a while, not big surprise…except maybe on the fuel efficiency front. Momentum traders, grab on to your charts! The patient value investors have been building their positions throughout ’06 and are taking a back seat smiling right now, waiting for all of the irrational exuberance to make their prescient bets self-fulfilling prophecies. More on this tomorrow.
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