Obama says US must readjust economy, change energy habits


Washington : If the United States is going to get serious about an energy policy, Americans must readjust their economy and personal habits in serious ways, leading Democratic presidential contender Barack Obama said on Monday.

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“We have to increase fuel efficiency standards on cars,” Obama said in an ABC “Good Morning America” interview. “We have to increase efficiency of buildings. We are going to have to change light bulbs. We are going to have to probably pay higher electricity prices, at least in the short term, as there are adaptations made by technology.” His proposal to curb greenhouse gases is not just an environmental issue but a national security issue as well, Obama said, “and I think the American people and the people here in New Hampshire understand that.” Obama is in first place in the most recent polls of Democrats in New Hampshire, which will hold its first-in-the-nation presidential primary on Tuesday. The Iowa caucuses, which Obama won last week, are structured differently than a regular primary.

Obama, who has called for ending U.S. “addiction” to foreign oil, supports implementation of a market-based cap-and-trade system to reduce carbon emissions by 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050.

The Illinois senator also calls for investing 150 billion dollars over 10 years to advance the next generation of biofuels and fuel infrastructure, accelerating the commercialization of plug-in hybrids, promoting development of commercial-scale renewable energy, investing in low-emissions coal plants and beginning the transition to a new digital electricity grid.