Senator Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, credits the unrest in Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya with the upswing in oil prices, now more than $100 a barrel. Grassley addressed his fellow Senators on the issue earlier this week.
"Our country is at risk. Our economy is at risk. Our nation's security is at risk," Grassley said. "The idea that we limit access to our own resources, which in turn leads us to go hat-in-hand to foreign dictators and oil sheiks, is ludicrous. It doesn't have to be that way."
The supply of fossil fuels is finite, so Grassley said we must look to alternative and renewable resources so we can improve our energy and national security. This includes supporting energy from wind, biomass, hydroelectric, solar, geothermal and biofuels.
"The federal mandate requires that ethanol be used, it does not mandate that it be produced domestically," Grassley said. "The incentive acts as encouragement to use a homegrown product. It increases economic activity at home and works to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. Without domestic biofuels, we'd be on bended knee even more than we are today begging others for oil."