(Good policy – promoted by EaBo Clipper)
The below Column, My View, was in today’s edition of the Cape Cod Times
Kerry Fails on Energy Policy
By JEFF BEATTY
August 18, 2008
The United States imports 70 percent of its oil from foreign countries at a cost of $700 billion per year. These figures result in high prices for gas at the pump and for heating oil in the tank for all Americans. These numbers represent a national security risk, an enormous transfer of wealth to foreign interests, and the continuation of short-sighted thinking on energy.
I don’t want this energy crisis played out generation after generation. When it comes to energy, my vision – and plan – is for an America that is strategically self-reliant and in control of its own destiny.
The U.S. Senate, including Sen. John Kerry, could have acted recently to resolve our current fuel crisis by voting for a comprehensive energy plan.
Instead, Kerry characteristically shirked his responsibility to the people of Massachusetts. He and the Senate leadership ducked for cover, allowing a comprehensive energy reform bill, which included lifting Congress’s moratorium on offshore drilling, to die.
Kerry and others then exited the U.S. Capitol for the August recess – a five-week vacation most of us cannot afford – leaving a steadfast few who demanded a vote on this issue literally standing in the dark of the House chamber with the American people left in the lurch.
There is hope. I, and a few others, are willing to act now to bring relief for the American people. The White House’s recent lifting of its own offshore drilling moratorium has already contributed to a 20 percent drop in the price of oil. There is also a “Gang of Ten” forming in the Senate that may offer a compromise bill that would move us ahead on renewable energy policy while opening the door for offshore drilling.
This is a start, but I want faster relief for the “gas pains” America is suffering now. As a founder of a business and a former Delta Force officer, FBI Special Agent and CIA counter-terrorism officer, I have the solutions-oriented leadership skills to take immediate action. My energy plan is designed to serve the American people – not foreign interests and not special interests:
* Oil. We must access the oil we have by increased drilling. That includes oil shale, the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and offshore areas. Strategically, we need to increase our refining capacity.
* Clean coal. This resource can carry a large part of the electrical generation needs and we must continue to use it extensively.
* Natural gas. In addition to power generation, as an interim measure, natural gas can be also used as fuel for our cars.
* Nuclear. We must increase nuclear power use. Not only can we use it here but it is an outstanding potential export. Land-based U.S. technology nuclear plants are a product and need to be exported to help reduce worldwide demand for oil while creating jobs and revenue for Americans.
* Solar. This technology has made advances that can reduce fossil fuel consumption and must be made more available on a local household and business level.
* Wind. Wind energy is an outstanding American opportunity. We can build wind turbines here in our abandoned industrial base, providing much needed good manufacturing jobs as we reduce our dependence on foreign oil.
Cities and towns are using wind power for their schools and municipal buildings, reducing need for fossil fuels and saving taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars annually in fuel costs in their communities.
* Hydroelectric and tidal energy. These sources are under exploited, particularly tidal. Advances in these technologies will soon harness ocean and tidal currents to supplement rivers and relieve our dependence on foreign oil. Here, too, we have the potential for new, good-paying manufacturing jobs.
* Conservation and law enforcement. We can reduce our dependence on energy by smart conservation measures which all Americans need to apply. We must make sure that fairness prevails and that our laws are followed preventing anyone from adding to our problems in time of crisis.
All of these measures, and more, are part of a comprehensive energy plan that will start reducing the cost of oil in the near term and will allow America’s families to minimize the effects of rising oil prices as we work towards new energy supplies and new technologies that will come online in the next 20-30 years. We must control our own energy future with actions now, not words. I will act now.
Jeff Beatty is the Republican Candidate running against Sen. John Kerry for U.S. Senate.