Salt Lake City (April 23, 2008) - Roy Innis, long-time leader of one of
America's leading civil rights organizations, told a group of Utah business
leaders today that Utah "will be a big loser" if climate change legislation
pending in Congress is enacted into law.
"The price of gasoline in Utah could easily double from the climate change
bill that they are now discussing in Washington, D.C., " he told the Utah
Business Coalition. "That will hurt every family, farm and business in this
state. It will especially hurt those on the bottom rungs of the economic
ladder, which is what concerns me most"
"With oil prices now surpassing $120 a barrel, I am simply outraged that the
congress, and politicians in Utah, are even considering proposals from the
radical environmental groups that would further constrict energy supply like
the climate bill now in Congress. That will only cause prices to skyrocket
further," Innis said.
"According to a recent study, some of the worst damage in the nation will be
brought down upon the State of Utah," he said. "This state could easily flip
from one of America's most productive economies into one of America's most
damaged economies if the Lieberman-Warner bill is passed"
The study cited by Innis was recently done by the highly regarded Science
Applications International Corporation. The full results can be found here:
The SAIC study found that passage of Lieberman-Warner would have these impacts
* Utah will lose 10,227 to 15,384 jobs in 2020 and 28,155 to 37,479 jobs in
2030 under this bill.
* Utah would see disposable household income reduced by $919 to $2,979 per
year by 2020 and $3,780 to $6,893 by 2030.
* The price of gasoline in Utah would increase between 74% and 140% by 2030,
while electricity prices would increase by 96% to 133%. Natural gas prices
would rise by 113% and 154% by 2030.
* Utah's gross state product would drop by between $1.1 and $1.5 billion per
year by 2020 and $4 and $4.7 billion by 2030.
* The impacts of this bill on the poor, who spend more of their income on
energy and other goods than other income brackets, would be especially harsh.
By 2020, energy costs would chew up 17% and 19% of income under this bill,
compared to a projected 14% without this bill. Others on fixed incomes, such
as the elderly will also suffer disproportionately.
* Utah's 1,125 schools and universities and 56 hospitals will likely
experience a 20% to 24% percent increase in expenditures by 2020 and a 64% to
84% increase by 2030. For government entities, costs for services, including
public transportation and vehicle fleets, such as school buses, will also rise
under this bill.
"Too many government leaders have bought into the predictions of environmental
Armageddon that we hear from radical environmental groups," said Innis. "Plans
to stop global warming by limiting domestic energy development will devastate
Utah's economy and disproportionately hurt the poor and minorities in this
Innis called on Utah business leaders to join him in "the next great civil
rights battle," which he said is to fight regressive environmental policies
and increased energy costs. "Our government leaders today need the same moral
courage we had in the 1960s. We cannot allow environmental radicals to pass
economic Jim Crow laws on their way to ending the American dream"