Abraham says US energy plan will focus on supply diversification

US Energy Sec. Spencer Abraham Tuesday said the energy program about to be launched by President George W. Bush would aim to make the country "more energy independent" through supply diversification, while balancing supply sources to maintain environmental sensitivity.


By an OGJ Online Correspondent

PARIS, May 16 -- US Energy Sec. Spencer Abraham Tuesday said the energy program about to be launched by President George W. Bush would aim to make the country "more energy independent" through supply diversification, while balancing supply sources to maintain environmental sensitivity.

Abraham, speaking at International Energy Agency's ministerial meeting, said the US would have to make use of "traditional sources" of energy, while "pursu(ing) research and development in alternative sources," if the country were to overcome the energy challenges it faces in the next 20 years.

He said the Bush administration's energy strategy, to be released Thursday, would focus on the country's "antiquated" energy infrastructure.

Abraham said strained refinery capacity was behind high gasoline prices. He said the strategy would increase research on energy supply and on production technology and seek to improve energy trade with Canada and Mexico.

"We will work together with our immediate neighbors and improve transmission grids with Mexico to work both ways."

Abraham said the Bush administration would name a separate task force on climate control and energy conservation issues.

"President Bush has a constructive policy on the environment; it is not on a back burner," he said, adding that some of the task force recommendations would address both clean air and greenhouse gases.

Abraham said the US was "engaged in a quiet negotiation with OPEC" to advance the understanding between producing and consuming countries.

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