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PRI's Environmental News Magazine

Bush Earth Day Speech

Air Date: Week of April 26, 2002

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We have an extended excerpt from President Bush’s Earth Day speech in New York’s Adirondack Mountains.

Transcript

CURWOOD: It was supposed to be a perfect photo op. President Bush chose New York’s Adirondack Mountains as the setting for his Earth Day speech. But, nature wasn’t cooperating. The springtime weather slid back toward winter, with snow and temperatures in the 20s.

So, instead of picturesque mountains as his backdrop, the President spoke to a crowd in a cafeteria at the White Face Mountain Lodge. Mr. Bush made the best of it, and took the opportunity to tout his environmental agenda. We have an excerpt, beginning with the President’s pitch for his "Clear Skies" initiative. He says it could cut acid rain by reducing power plant emissions.

[APPLAUSE]

BUSH: We will reach our ambitious air quality goals through a market-based approach that rewards innovation, reduces cost and, most importantly, guarantees results. Mine is a results-oriented administration. When we say we expect results, we mean it.

We will set mandatory limits on air pollution with firm deadlines, while giving companies the flexibility to find the best ways to meet the mandatory limits. "Clear Skies" legislation, when passed by Congress, will significantly reduce smog and mercury emissions, as well as stop acid rain.

[APPLAUSE]

BUSH: My administration will foster technologies that I’m absolutely convinced will change America for the better. We will promote innovative ways to encourage conservation. I believe we’ll be driving automobiles driven by fuel cells in a relatively short period of time, and we’re promoting that technology. I know we need to promote renewable sources of energy to become less dependent on foreign sources of energy.

[APPLAUSE]

BUSH: We also must encourage natural resource restoration. And one good place to start is in the Farm Bill that’s right now before Congress. Good stewardship is the daily work of America’s farmers, and those who own the land. I like to tell people Laura and I are proud to own a Texas ranch. And for us, every day is Earth Day.

If you own your own land, every day is Earth Day. If you have to make a living off your land, it’s important to make your land as productive as is possible. Every day is Earth Day. And so, therefore, I strongly support a strong farm conservation effort in the Farm Bill before the Congress.

[APPLAUSE]

BUSH: With more funding and incentives for conservation, we can help our farmers preserve wetlands and wildlife habitat, and to better protect water quality. Americans have reached a great consensus about the protection on the environment. We’ve come to understand that success of a generation is not defined by wealth alone. We want to be remembered for our material progress, no question about it. But we also want to be remembered for the respect we give to our natural world.

This Earth Day finds us on the right path, gaining an appreciation for the world in our care. Each of you here today is doing your part to advance that work, and to spread this spirit. And on behalf of our country, I want to thank you. May God bless you all.

[APPLAUSE]

CURWOOD: President George W. Bush speaking on Earth Day at the White Mountain Lodge in New York’s Adirondack State Park.

[MUSIC]

 

 

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