38 senators voice support for defense dept. purchase of biofuels
A group of 38 senators have signed a letter opposing two amendments that, if passed, would hinder the U.S. Department of Defense’s ability to purchase and use alternative fuels. Both amendments, approved by the Senate Armed Services Committee by a 13-12 vote, are part of the National Defense Authorization Act that could take effect in 2013. The senators are concerned that the amendments “could cause harm to our national security and military readiness while hindering national efforts to develop viable domestic alternative fuels.”
In the letter written to Senate Majority Leader Harry Ried, D-Nev., and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., the group points out that the DOD is the single largest user of oil in the world, consuming roughly 355,000 barrels of oil per day in fiscal year 2011 alone. “These trends are expected to continue in the coming years,” the letter stated. “We strongly support the ability of military leaders to develop and employ alternative fuels. Given these concerns, we oppose the inclusion of these harmful and counterproductive provisions in the Fiscal Year 2013 NDAA.”
Like the Farm Bill and the “fiscal cliff”-focused negotiations, the NDAA is expected to reach Congress after the Thanksgiving holiday. Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Joe Lieberman, I-Conn., also signed the letter.