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Obama Speaks Out on New Lighting Standards

The environment is on everyone’s minds these days, even Barack Obama’s.

The president is supporting efforts to conserve energy, and announced recently that he was speeding the delivery of $346 million in economic stimulus money to aid energy efficiency in commercial buildings.

“I know light bulbs may not seem sexy, but this simple action holds enormous promise because 7 percent of all the energy consumed in America is used to light our homes and businesses,” the president said, standing alongside Energy Secretary Steven Chu at the White House.

According to Obama, his newly announced efficiency standards for lamps would save consumers up to $4 billion annually. It would also conserve enough energy to power every US home for 10 months and reduce emissions produced by 166 million cars a year.

Bold claims? Republicans think so.

“Conservation is only half the equation. Even as we use less energy, we need to produce more of our own,” said Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky. “We have to admit there’s a gap between the clean, renewable fuel we want and the reliable energy we need.”