Environment overlooked in speech

Jan. 21, 2004 at 12:31 AM

WASHINGTON, Jan. 21 (UPI) -- President Bush avoided the issue of the environment almost complete in his State of the Union speech Tuesday.

In a brief reference, the president urged Congress, "to pass legislation to modernize our energy system, promote conservation, and make America less dependent on foreign sources of energy."

The Green Party of the United States, in a pre-speech rebuttal said, "The Green Party warns that the reliance on oil and the drive to control the world's oil resources represent both an environmental and a security threat."

Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., in a reaction to the speech, said, "The president has no environmental record. His record has amounted to photo opportunities; he has rolled back issues of clean air, clean water, coal mining waste, and wetlands."

On its Web site, the Sierra Club called attention to TomPaine.com's State of the Union scorecard, which offers readers the chance to evaluate whether the president acknowledged, ignored, or spun several issues, including the environment.

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