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AABE Blog

The Great Compromise

April 30th, 2012

Submitted by: Chris Nalls

The late American poet James Russell Lowell wrote, “[c]ompromise makes a good umbrella, but a poor roof; it is a temporary expedient, often wise in party politics, almost sure to be unwise in statesmanship.” I respectfully beg to differ. Compromise is how the ideal and the reality find common ground.
The American energy portfolio is the product of compromise between economic viability and environmental sustainability. Traditional coal combustion is too carbon inefficient to meet our current demands and photovoltaic power is too costly for most power applications. In between those two extremes, at the heart of our great compromise, lies natural gas.

Roughly 23 percent of the electricity in the United States is generated by natural gas. That percentage is certain to increase as natural gas prices have plummeted to a 10-year low in the midst of the shale drilling boom. The price of natural gas is a mere 14 percent of its crude oil energy equivalent. Beyond price, the Natural Gas Supply Association projects that shale gas reserves are sufficient to meet at least 75 years of domestic demand.
On price per kwh, natural gas has already out classed American nuclear energy, and in terms of delivering greenhouse gas emission reductions per dollar invested, it dramatically out classes wind or solar. The capital cost per kwh of a typical combined cycle gas power project is just a fraction of that of wind farms, solar plants, hydroelectric dams, and geothermal plants.

Cheap electricity generation is only the tip of the proverbial iceberg. As gasoline prices climbs, both original equipment for and conversions to alternative fueled vehicles for both heavy and light duty applications will be in increasingly high demand. Liquefied and compressed natural gas stations are sprouting up across the country. Not only does natural gas lower the cost of home heating for tens of millions of our citizens and dramatically reducing the greenhouse gas emissions, natural gas has been dubbed a job creation machine. A 2011 IHC report estimated that the shale gas industry will employ 1.6 million workers by 2035. As a result of the lower direct cost and the indirect reduction in the cost of goods and services, the savings resulting from the increased use of natural gas will add an average of $2000 to the spending power of every household by that same date.

Environmentalist too can claim a victory in the natural gas boom. It is appreciably cleaner-burning than its fossil fuel counterparts. The EPA has noted that natural gas power plants produce half as much carbon dioxide, less than a third as much nitrogen oxides, and one percent as much sulfur oxides as traditional coal power plants. Recent EPA regulations will retire many coal plants, which are likely to be replaced by natural gas plants.
To be certain, natural gas has its drawbacks. Like all fossil fuels, it is nonrenewable. Its transport and generation produce air emissions. Furthermore, the hydraulic fracturing process by which much of it is extracted from shale is thought by some to raise environmental risks. (A topic to be addressed in a future entry focused exclusively on fracking).

While it may be clean, natural gas is not green. But if our objectives are to reduce the negative health impacts on our children, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, to reduce energy related costs for low and moderate income families, and to increase our energy independence all in the near term, then this is a pretty good deal. You can call it a compromise; I will call it a Win/Win.

Chris Nalls is a 3rd year law student at Georgetown University.

Solyndra vs. Shipyards in Energy Jobs

October 3rd, 2011

Though our government plays a critical role in supporting American industries, it has only a modest role in creating jobs in industry. Although the President and his administration are clearly committed to doing all they can to encourage job creation, our current economic issues cannot be resolved until more of our industries show greater confidence in America’s future and focus again on achieving success.

American energy firms provide a particularly good case study of the private sector’s ability to innovate and grow, even when faced with a tough economic period and a rather volatile economic environment.

Since the recession began in Dec 2007, the total number of U.S. jobs has dropped by 105,000 jobs; meanwhile, our oil and gas sector has worked to add 20,300 new positions. Not only is the oil and gas sector growing, but the benefits of its direct growth spill over into other industries too.

Consider the Aker Shipyard in Philadelphia. Barely nine months ago, it was on track to close by July. But now that the ExxonMobil Corporation has placed a more than $400 million order for two 46,000-ton product tankers, the near-extinct yard is expected to employ about 1,000 workers, many of whom will be from those currently unemployed. And the inspiring examples don’t end there.

From Thomas Edison inventing electric-power generation in 1880 to Elijah McCoy a decade earlier creating the automatic lubricator necessary to grease the steam engines of trains (a system so preferred by railroad engineers, they dubbed it “the real McCoy”), America’s history is filled with pioneers and entrepreneurs who have pushed our economy forward through private innovation.

It’s important that our government continue its regulated support of American industry without attempting to define its path for growth. When we fully emerge from this very difficult recession as an even stronger nation, it will be a result of what some call American exceptionalism, a combination of technological advances, courageous management, and prudent investment, not by government, but by private enterprise.

Natural Gas: Good for the Economy, Good for the Environment

September 19th, 2011

From a perspective of more than three decades of experience in energy program management and regulation, I can truly appreciate the incredible technological and regulatory strides our country has made. And looking back at some of the challenges encountered during my first years of work at the Department of Energy in the 1970s, I marvel at how we’ve met and far surpassed expectations.

Since 1970, the total U.S. population has grown by 42%, GDP has grown by 195%, and energy consumption has increased 178%. Yet between 1970 and 2005, our energy intensity and our emission of six principal air pollutants decreased by 53%. Additionally the number of our lakes, rivers, and streams that meet state quality goals is up 33% from 30 years ago.

Early environmental laws and regulations established by federal, state, and local governments deserve a major part of the credit for this dramatic increase in energy efficiency and environmental quality. And our economy played an important role too.

As one Department of Interior analyst observed, “Cleaner air is a direct consequence of better technologies and the enormous and sustained investments that only a rich nation could have sunk into developing, installing, and operating these technologies.”

Natural gas provides an excellent case study of this effect.

Technological advances, including horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing, have opened up vast new supplies of affordable natural gas. As a result, the cost dynamics of natural gas projects have changed as well — leading to greater use of natural gas powered buses to improve air quality in cities, conversion away from old, outdated, inefficient coal power generation towards cleaner natural gas plants, and a better economic profile for renewable energy projects that rely on natural gas as a back-up power source.

Not only has investment in shale gas risen to record levels, but the natural gas industry now employs more of our citizens than ever before. That’s especially good news at a time when the national unemployment rate holds at a staggering 16.7% for African Americans.

In addition to making natural gas a more cost effective, more job creating industry, proactive leadership by state regulators and advances in production technologies have also made natural gas development through hydraulic fracturing an even more environmentally friendly. Natural gas companies now drill multiple wells at single location to reduce the footprint of development, while new regulations have drastically improved water recycling efforts to minimize waste.

Smarter regulation of the industry’s operation and better technology has won over a number of environmental advocates as well. Frank Matzner of the Natural Resources Defense Council said of natural gas in 2010, “we need to look at ways in which we can reduce our carbon footprint now and it’s appealing that it has a smaller footprint” than traditional methods of oil and gas extraction. Others, like Carl Pope of the Sierra Club, view natural gas development as an environmentally friendly alternative to traditional methods: “Natural gas is an excellent example of a fuel that can be produced in quite a clean way, and shouldn’t be wasted.”

While the record speaks for itself, it’s important that we continue to support environmental improvement while also trumpeting the benefits of natural gas development. The balance between these forces has been the driver of U.S. progress in the past and can ensure continued advancement toward a healthier, more environmentally and economically sustainable future.

As our national demand increases over the next several decades, technological advances coupled with proficient, competent regulation is important to our energy security and a prosperous future.

Decision to Delay Air Quality Standard Not Partisan Politics

September 13th, 2011

Last month, the U.S. economy added so few jobs that the unemployment rate held at 9.1% for the general population and a staggering 16.7% for African Americans. Millions of our fellow citizens are still unable to earn the income needed to care for themselves or their families.

In light of this bleak economic news, President Obama-not one to side-step difficult issues-decided to delay EPA’s ozone standard until at least 2013 when it’s due for a standard review under the rules laid out in the Clean Air Act. This decision was received with jeers on one side and cheers on the other. Yet, both sides need to understand the others perspective in order to enjoy any genuine progress on the issue.

From an environmental perspective, the current ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) of 75 parts per billion (ppb) is already several years old, no one should be surprised by them but advocates for stricter standards should await the courts. From industry’s perspective, alternatives to current practices must protect both economic and health interests of the American public. That means regulatory directives need to be cost-effective-especially since now is the worst time in decades to do anything that would further hamstring our economic competitiveness, reduce or relocate jobs, hurt the spending capability of American families, or reduce industry’s ability to invest in infrastructure improvements.

Unfortunately, neither side seems to acknowledge the fact that the White House’s decision to delay a move on the ozone standard was not a partisan decision but an American one. From all indications, our economy is in an extremely fragile state, and we cannot afford any new regulatory action that runs the risk of hindering prospects for recovery. President Obama did not throw out either the environmental concerns or economic concerns. Instead, he chose to give the economy a bit more time to recover before regulatory officials revisit these standards.

Congress is clearly at an impasse even when dealing with some of the country’s most straightforward issues. If we are to overcome this present roadblock to greater policy certainty, EPA and industry will need to redouble their cooperative efforts to find a workable solution.

Continuous partisan bickering, persistent ideological stonewalling, and perpetual incivility are too expensive. And our hardworking families simply cannot afford them.

Rare Earth Rub: A Clean Energy Roadblock That Cannot Be Ignored

March 22nd, 2011

President Obama in his State of the Union set an important goal for drawing 80% of our energy from clean sources by 2035. He showed political grit, which will be needed to achieve an energy revolution.

But there’s an elephant in the room that few of our leaders are talking about: growth in key clean energy technologies requires rare earth elements (REE) that America has stopped producing. And the Saudi Arabia of their production – China – is using its monopoly on REE production to force companies that need the metals to move their plants there, rather than keep them here.

REE are a group of 17 chemical elements that are used in most every sustainable energy technology, including wind turbines, solar cells, hybrid cars and efficient appliances. Despite the misleading name, rare earths are actually quite abundant, but there are only a few places in the world where concentrations are high enough to make mining profitable.

Twenty years ago, America led the world in REE production, but in the 1990s, China set out to monopolize the important elements. It understood that by controlling REE production, it could see explosive growth in manufacturing and lucrative R&D jobs. China today produces 97 percent of the world’s REE supply, and it has dramatically slashed exports to about 40,000 tons per year, roughly a quarter of global demand. As a result, China is now able to force REE-dependent international companies to move their manufacturing operations there.

Herein lies the problem for American policymakers; An energy revolution on the scale envisioned by the President would require tens of thousands of wind turbines, large-scale solar plants, smart meters and a litany of other technologies that need REE. Construction of just one utility scale wind turbine can require at least a ton of REE.

To realize the President’s dream of an energy revolution – and the tens of thousands of new green energy jobs that would come with it – the U.S. must commit itself to re-developing a domestic supply chain of REE that includes mining, separation, refining, alloying and manufacturing. Without a domestic supply chain, we may find ourselves even more dependent on foreign countries for our energy tomorrow than we are today.

The U.S. Geological Survey estimates at least 13 million tons of extractable REE exists within the U.S., but harvesting our natural resources requires a supportive government effort and an industry that is willing to be transparent regarding its ability to protect the environment.

Reestablishing a domestic supply chain will also require a new talent pool of workers educated in physical, chemical and mathematical sciences. As America’s REE industry fell behind China, so did its expertise. The U.S. today ranks 25th in math and 21st in science relative to the rest of the world. Rebuilding intellectual capital takes time, and it will require a new national commitment.

If energy security and economic growth is our challenge, this is indeed America’s ‘Sputnik’ moment. Achieving an energy revolution will require that barriers to responsible mining and manufacturing be removed, and that will require commitment to address concerns about environmental issues. Equally important, American families and the nation’s educational system will have to take on a central role in producing a cadre of technically trained men and women needed “to win our future.”

The President deserves credit for laying out a bold vision for American energy. He was correct in recognizing that progressives and conservatives, Representative and Senators, Democrats and Republicans must work together to make it happen. And it is up to all of us to insist that they do.

Talk About Energy During CBC

October 27th, 2010

The Congressional Black Caucus 2010 Annual Legislative Conference is over and, from an energy and environmental policy perspective, it was, by far, the most engaging legislative conference in the Caucus history. Moreover, your Association was substantially engaged in many aspects of this remarkable program.

The most involved CBC member again this year was Representative Sheila Jackson-Lee from Houston, Texas. The congressional representative hosted the Critical Issues in Climate Change Symposium, a day long series of sessions sponsored by the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies and the AABE in conjunction with her annual Energy Braintrust. The Symposium addressed a series of topics including connecting environmental justice with science, policy and practice; how smart growth can scale up equity in transportation, housing and other related areas; and stimulating trade, investment, technology transfer and development between the U.S. and Africa. Members of the AABE were speakers and presenters throughout the symposium including Dr. Warren Washington from the National Center for Atmospheric Research and past Chair, Carolyn Green. Some of you may recall that Dr. Washington is 2010 recipient of our organization’s most prestigious honor, the James E. Stewart Award.

During her Energy Braintrust, Congresswoman Lee invited a distinguished panel to address how climate and energy are shaping US policy. Among those panelists was Dot Harris, Synergy Leader at General Electric Power Company and AABE board member.

In addition to Congresswoman Lee, other CBC members also hosted braintrusts that addressed energy issues. Congressman G.K. Butterfield of North Carolina hosted a session that discussed how the U.S. Department of Energy was including African American businesses and institutions in its contracting for procurement of goods and various grants and contracts for other work, including university research. A key participant in the discussion was the former Vice Chancellor of North Carolina A&T University, AABE’s university partner.

Congressman Emanuel Cleaver of New York hosted a panel discussion about asking how we take on the business opportunities that are available in this new green economy. Congresswoman Barbara Lee of California focused on the BP Deep Water Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and the impacts that it has had on the people of the Gulf region. Representative James E. Clyburn of South Carolina held a panel discussion looking at new technologies that would reduce America’s dependence on foreign supplies of energy.

In addition to a full energy agenda during the CBC Legislative weekend, the association also had a full agenda for its business meetings. During the Chapter President’s meeting, David Owens, Chair of the Legislative Issues and Public Policy Committee, shared the current energy and climate legislation and the administration’s efforts to jumpstart the transition to a smart grid. He was very clear on the opportunities for AABE Chapters to be of support to the companies of AABE members and to the energy industry by ensuring that our communities know about the smart grid efforts and understand the benefits that the smart grid could hold for them.

Michael Blake, Associate Director of Public Engagement for the White House spoke at a luncheon where he provided an in-depth view of the efforts that the Administration is making in the areas of energy and environment. Michael also spoke strongly to the need for everyone to take an active role in the political process at the local, state, and federal levels.

The National Office was honored to have hosted a delegation of energy business leaders from the nation of South Africa that was led by Michael Sudarkasa, President of the African Business Group. Other members of the delegation included J. Eric Wright of Africa Venture Partners, Sol Masolo of City Power, Lehlohonolo Nakedi of Lehadima Investments, Sindi Moloto of the Gauteng Economic Development Agency, and Harry Mohloare of KYD Consulting Engineers. While in the U.S., the delegation visited Bennett College for Women, North Carolina A&T University and the AABE Institute to review the potential capability to address some of the training needs faced by energy concerns on the Continent. After two days in Greensboro, the delegation moved to the Washington, D.C. area for a symposium at Georgetown University and a series of federal agency meetings and business discussions. Bennett College, A&T University and AABE are firmly committed to working with the energy business community in South Africa and all three are anticipating extensive further contact and discussions before the end of the calendar year.

With the success of the September Board Meeting, we at the National Office continue to be excited about all the opportunities that lie ahead for the AABE. We look forward to pursuing those opportunities and to working with you all.

Ensuring Equal Opportunities in the Green Economy

September 7th, 2010

A month ago, this office printed a short piece expressing our concern that the development of the renewable energy industry was not sufficiently benefiting those elements of our society which have too often been left out of serious economic development opportunities. Earlier this month, the Ohio State House of Representatives took action that tossed away a chance to lay a path toward a better life for the unemployed and underemployed minority citizens of Ohio. The provisions that provided for minority hiring and minority contracting targets was excluded from the legislative package of incentives that the state was providing to the wind industry to build an active industry in Ohio. In spite of the stalwart efforts of Ohio Representative Winburn, the minority hiring and contracting provision went down to defeat, and both the majority and minority citizens of the Ohio loss a prime opportunity to lead the nation toward increased economic growth in those communities where it is most needed, and toward developing a society of which we all could be proud.

President Obama was correct in saying that the introduction of new energy technologies will be an important opportunity for addressing our goals for greater racial and ethnic economic equality. Most of the people in the renewable energy industry want those technologies to benefit the entire nation. It may be time for the real leaders of the renewable energy industry to speak up about the importance of new energy technologies providing a way to have a nation that is more in keeping with the ideals embodied in the American constitution. It may be time for Steven Chu, Kathy Zoi, Dan Avizu, and the other real leaders of the renewable energy community to let AWEA and all of America know that the winds that blow across our central plains and the sun that shines down on our western deserts are resources which should benefit all Americans. The hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars that have gone into developing and supporting these technologies give all of our citizens an equity position that is due some reasonable return. It is unacceptable that these public investments only accrue to the benefit of those advantageously positioned people and exclude those who only look for the opportunity to earn a fair wage.

We have to make it our mission to see to it that the past does not dictate the future. This new “industrial revolution” should be more than another opportunity to increase economic disparity, more than an opportunity to perpetuate racial and ethnic inequities. This should be as step forward; not a step back.

Message from the President – June 2010

June 19th, 2010

For those of you who were not able to attend the 2010 National Conference in Columbus, Ohio, I have to tell you that you missed a truly great conference. You will recall that the theme of the conference was “People. Profit. Planet. An Inclusive Approach to a Bright Reliable Energy Future”. The presentations, panel discussions and the workshops were all built around that theme and every attendee left the conference with some new knowledge, some greater understanding, or some deeper insight. The CEO Roundtable and the Legislative Crossfire panel were, once again, runaway hits. The “Leadership Address” this year featured The Honorable Philip Moeller, Commissioner of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. For an update on the key technologies and policies that are important to our industry, the conference could not have been more appropriate or more timely.

This year the James E. Stewart Award went to Dr. Warren M. Washington, senior scientist and the head of the Climate Change Research Section of the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR). Dr. Washington is the past President of the American Meteorological Society, has been an advisor to five US Presidents, former Chair of the National Science Board (the body that oversees the National Science Foundation), a member of the American Geophysical Union, a member of the National Academy of Sciences, and the holder of a Nobel Peace Prize. The James E. Stewart Award is the most prestigious award that we present each year, and Dr. Washington is a very worthy recipient.

I also want to take this time, to congratulate two other important award recipients. Mr. Llevelyn Rhone, recipient of the Energy Entrepreneur of the Year award and Ms. Dot Harris, recipient of the Clarke R. Watson Chairman’s Cup. Llevelyn is the President and CEO of Geneva Pipeline, a utility infrastructure company headquartered in Geneva, Ohio. He was recognized for his achievements as an energy entrepreneur. Dot Harris is the chair of our Energy Entrepreneurs Committee and Secretary of our Board of Directors. She was recognized for her leadership and commitment to the growth of our organization. Please join me in congratulating both Llevelyn and Dot.

Those who have the opportunity should attend the Western Regional conference which will be held October 6-8, in Pasadena, California. Click here to get more information. The 2011 National Conference will be hosted by the Northeast Region next spring. There will be more information of both the Western Regional Conference and the 2011 AABE National Conference in the weeks ahead.

At the General Membership meeting in May, new Officers and Directors were elected to our Board. They will serve during the 2010 – 2012 term. The newly elected officers are as follows: Dan Packer, Chair; Ralph Cleveland, First Vice Chair; Warner Williams, Second Vice Chair; LaDoris Harris, Secretary; Polly Rosemond, Assistant Secretary; Sabrina Campbell, Treasurer; and Rufus Gladney, Assistant Treasurer. The newly elected directors are: Carolyn Green, Bentina Terry, David Owens, and Stephanie Hickman.

The Association is deeply indebted Robert Holmes, Senior Vice President with Alabama Power who stepped down from the board to provide time to pursue other national and international interests. We thank him for the years of support and guidance that he has provided. His experience as an internationally recognized expert in corporate ethics and management has made a vital contribution to our association’s growth and development. We are a stronger and better organization because of what he has done for us.

This past month has been an important time in preparing the way for future organizational growth and for new, exciting program developments. In May, the Association completed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Morehouse College Entrepreneur Center to assist the center in developing a major new thrust in supporting energy related businesses and in integrating energy studies into the undergraduate college curriculum. The long standing relationship that the Association has had with North Carolina A & T State University now has a new partner. Bennett College for Women has joined the AABE Institute in its commitment to provide capacity building services to the energy sector in the nations of Africa and the Caribbean. Bennett College, one of the foremost institutions focused on the higher education of African American women will, through its leadership, its academic strength and its commitment to positive societal change, add immeasurably to the viability of the AABE Institute. AABE has traditionally held its technical expertise in environmental concerns as a core capability. That key capability is now even stronger by virtue of the Memorandum of Understanding that it signed last month with the African American Environmentalist Association (AAEA). The AAEA was founded by Norris McDonald, its current President and CEO more than twenty years ago and its mission and programs mesh well with those of AABE. We have high hopes that this will be a very profitable and productive relationship.

As we hit the halfway point of the year, our organization continues to thrive and grow. We renewed old friendships and established new ones at our annual conference. We continue to develop partnerships with organizations nationwide as a way to further our message and out mission. And we’ve got leadership who feel passion for what we do and have tremendous ideas for how we can continue to not only grow by the numbers, but more importantly, work closely with our communities. I invite you all to share your ideas and thank you for all that you do.

New Bill, New Chance to Place Blame

May 18th, 2010

As we begin to debate the latest energy bill in Congress, let us not forget the lives that were lost on the oil rig that exploded in the Gulf of Mexico. Our deepest sympathies go out to their mourning families as well as to the loved ones of those who lost their lives in this year’s coal mine explosion in Montcoal, West Virginia.

Supplying our nation’s energy is not an easy endeavor, and thousands of our citizens knowingly take those physical risks to capture the resource that provides the services that keep our economy growing and our country prosperous. The workers on a rig in the middle of the Gulf, the heavy machine operators thousands of feet below ground, and the line men in cherry pickers following an ice storm all deserve our admiration and our gratitude. The environmental damage resulting from the Gulf disaster is nothing short of tragic, but equally tragic is the loss of human life. In light of these events and as we contemplate our energy future, it is important that we remember to acknowledge those who bear the physical risk to keep our economy strong.

Yes, we need to understand what happened and to take those steps that would prevent such calamities from ever occurring again. But, indeed, there is blame enough to go around. Each one of us should recognize and accept that our profligate use of energy is one of the more important contributing factors to the energy and environmental difficulties that we face. These recent tragedies, one in the mountains and one at the shore, will hopefully leave us with a fuller sense of the costs and a greater respect for the risks involved with meeting America’s energy demands. Recognizing what it takes to provide the fuels for the products and services that we rely upon just might make some of us more appropriately esteem the people and companies that too often are publically admonished for only doing what we ask of them.

Don’t Leave U.S.Public Out of Process

May 6th, 2010

America is a nation of innovators. We are also a nation of enormous natural resources. Congress should lead in carefully crafting a climate policy which allows us to effectively marry those two assets, so that we can achieve the kind of sustainable energy and economic future we all desire.

My hope is that our legislative branch will work with all stakeholders to craft a climate policy that will guide this nation’s efforts in managing the emission of greenhouse gases and in mitigating the affects of the climate change phenomena.

A major portion of that policy guidance will assist the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in meeting the responsibilities that the Supreme Court has said it is obligated to take on. One can understand that members of the United States Senate are more than a bit frustrated by the difficulty and the complexity of the assignment. One can also sympathize with Senator Murkowski from Alaska who seems to be fearful of what the EPA will do in the absence of Congressional action. Her constituents, better than many Americans, see the dramatic impacts of the climate shifts that are manifest across the globe.

However, the issue should raise concern — not so much with EPA, as with any process that would purport to move to act unilaterally to manage the world’s most prolific emitter. The Senator is correct to be skeptical of any proposal that is not the product of a very broad, participatory process. And, even though that process might not be the most efficient or the most effective; efficiency and effectiveness are, at this point, less important than the fact that a broad spectrum of the American public needs to have ownership of the process and the product. The only way that we, as a nation, get that chance at ownership is if the Congress steps up to its responsibility and works openly and aggressively to fashion the path forward.

Energy policies and energy technologies are rather complicated. But one thing is quite clear. America and other countries around the globe will need to drive more capital into a diverse array of fuels for the next many decades if the essential needs of people are going to be met. It would be imprudent to implement any regulation that directly discourages investment in our energy industry.
While Washington officials continue to hash out these contentious issues, many American businesses are already working to develop and commercialize cleaner fuels and more efficient technologies. Some are researching ways to produce and distribute more sustainable forms of energy — including biofuel, solar, wind, biomass nuclear, and natural gas. Others are focused on ways to efficiently capture and store carbon or to burn coal more cleanly.

The fact is that the more clean options American businesses and American families have the better off we will be economically and environmentally.

To leave to the administration the responsibility to design, develop and promulgate a system to address the nation’s efforts to manage GHG emissions to mitigate climate change will ultimately result in the public criticism, finger-pointing, and lack of acceptance. Neither stripping EPA of the ability to act, nor forcing EPA to act without Congressional guidance is in the best interest of the people of this or any nation. Unless all three arms of government, executive, judicial, and legislative, are onboard, any efforts will be counterproductive and will only serve to delay effective progress.

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