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Senate's Failure to Respond to Oil Disaster is Inexcusable

Pelavin: "At a time when we need a new national energy strategy to move away from our dangerous oil dependence, inaction in response to the Gulf oil disaster is inexcusable."

Contact: Eric Harris or Rachel Cohen
202.387.2800 | news@rac.org

WASHINGTON, D.C., August 4, 2010 -- In response to the Senate's failure to consider an oil spill response bill before its August recess, Mark Pelavin, Associate Director of the Religious Action Center, issued the following statement:

We are deeply disappointed by the Senate's failure to respond legislatively to the economic and environmental crisis in the Gulf before recessing for the summer. As we watch oil spills unfold in the Gulf and in Michigan, we remain frustrated by the Congress's refusal to adopt legislation that meets the needs of those suffering through these crises and prevents future oil disasters.

Our Jewish values demand that we respond to the economic and environmental justice implications of our dangerous overdependence on oil. We are called "to till and to tend" our natural world, and to lend whatever is required to those in need in times of crisis. At a time when we need a new national energy strategy to move away from our dangerous oil dependence, inaction in response to the Gulf oil disaster is inexcusable.

Despite recent progress in the Gulf, we know that the restoration and recovery process will continue long after the runaway well is finally sealed. Congress must act to ensure that communities and precious ecosystems in the Gulf are protected and that such a disaster can never happen again. We look forward to continuing to fight for an adequate response to the Gulf oil crisis the moment that Congress returns from its August recess.

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The Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism is the Washington office of the Union for Reform Judaism, whose more than 900 congregations across North America encompass 1.5 million Reform Jews, and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, whose membership includes more than 1,800 Reform rabbis. Visit www.rac.org for more.



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