Udall says fate of energy bill is still uncertain
DENVER – Colorado Congressman Mark Udall says the fate of a proposed federal renewable energy standard is “touch and go” as the U.S. House heads into the debate over a new energy bill.The Democratic lawmaker and his cousin New Mexico Congressman Tom Udall are pushing a measure that would require the nation’s large utilities to get 15 percent of their power from renewable energy sources by 2020. Action on the bill was planned Friday but pushed back one day because of a hold-up on other measures.Several states, including Colorado, have renewable energy standards. Udall says a national standard would be good for the economy and lessen the country’s dependence on imported energy.He expects approval of a provision in the energy bill prohibiting energy development on federal land on top of the Roan Plateau. The Bureau of Land Management has authorized up to 1,570 new wells on the western Colorado landmark with up to 210 of those on top. Critics fear the effect on wildlife and pockets pristine backcountry on the plateau’s top.