The president has integrated energy security goals with environment policy, focusing on renewable power. But his effort won't succeed, analysts say, unless Congress agrees to put a price on carbon emissions.
Even as health care dominated the news, Obama energy czar Carol Browner – working with the departments of Interior, Energy, and Transportation – has established a new, unified energy-and-environment policy. But whether this focus on renewable power and energy security can succeed depends largely on whether Congress approves climate-energy legislation that puts a price on carbon emissions, energy experts say.
"For 20 years we've been ... drifting in the wrong direction," says David Pumphrey, an energy and national-security expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. "This administration has turned things around. What's important is that we are ... moving in a positive direction now."
He and others tick off the administration's most significant energy-related accomplishments to date:
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