After Barack Obama’s incredible victory in the presidential election, it's clear that this country has taken a step in the right direction when it comes to equal rights, and now it’s time to take an important step in another direction: clean energy. We know global warming is real; it affects not only the physical appearance of the world, but also climate and weather patterns. It's time we start to reduce our dependence on not only foreign oil, but oil in general.
Wind power only contributes over 1% of the total electricity generated in the United States. Compared to Denmark's nearly 20%, we are far behind in the search for alternative power. Although we have the largest number of wind turbines, we have such a high demand for electricity that they barely make a dent. Across the nation, we have many opportunities to build turbines both on land and offshore. Wind farms at the moment are our easiest and quickest answer to the energy crisis.
That is where the man with plan comes in: T. Boone Pickens, a hedge fund chair with a net worth over $3 billion. Chances are you've seen television ads promoting his Pickens Plan on every major network in the United States. His plan is to promote clean, affordable energy using wind farms. Not only is he promoting the technology, he's taking the initiative too. Currently, he is building a 200,000 acre wind farm that will one day be attached to the electrical grid of Texas.
Pickens believes in using our own resources to reduce dependency on foreign oil by nearly 30%. Natural gas is more abundant than oil and the technology to use it in cars and other automobiles already exists. 20% of public transit buses currently use natural gas because it's cleaner and cheaper. Cheaper, though, does not mean less effective than the oil we're currently using. In fact, many major car manufacturers are working on Natural Gas Vehicles.
The one man that can implement the Pickens Plan better than Pickens himself is President-elect Barack Obama. With an energy plan similar to the Pickens Plan, the two seem like a perfect match. President-elect Obama plans on decreasing greenhouse emissions, putting one million Plug-In Hybrid cars on the road by 2015, and creating new jobs by using alternative energy. Also, the President-elect has recently been quoted as saying he would be open to the idea of offshore drilling to help reduce our addiction to foreign oil. While President-elect Obama is an advocate for clean coal energy, natural gas is not out of the question. Seeing as how natural gas can eliminate carbon dioxide emissions by 90-97% in vehicles, greenhouse emissions would drastically decrease.
Pickens was recently quoted as saying, “I’m strongly encouraged by Senator Obama’s speech on America’s energy future. Foreign oil is killing our economy and putting our nation at risk." In that speech President-elect Obama brought up Pickens several times, once by acknowledging, “T. Boone Pickens is right. We need a much bolder and much bigger set of solutions.” Though in the past, President-elect Obama has been hesitant to make friends with "oil tycoons", there seem to be similar ideologies when it comes to energy between these two men. A strong relationship could be in the near future.
T. Boone Pickens is an intelligent man with a true passion for clean energy. He claims he's not in it for the money, but even if he is trying to make a profit off this, is it really that despicable that someone would make money off something that could potentially help save our planet? Rarely does a man as wealthy and successful as Pickens take interest in something that affects the entire planet. Maybe he can become a role model for others with financial freedom to take initiative in leaving a positive mark on this planet.Powered by Sidelines