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Posted on on January 28th, 2012
by Pincas Jawetz (

From THE WHITE HOUSE BLOG: Talking Energy in Las Vegas: From a UPS facility in Las Vegas, the Presidentspoke about the future of American-made energy. “[Even] with all this oil production, we only have about 2 percent of the world’s oil reserves,” the President said, “So we’ve got to have an all-out, all-in, all-of-the-above strategy that develops every source of American energy—a strategy that is cleaner and cheaper and full of new jobs.”


Everything You Need to Know: President Obama’s Blueprint for American-Made Energy.

oil reserves by country

With less than 2 percent of the world’s oils reserves, however, the United States must find new ways to produce the energy we need. We’ve nearly doubled our use of renewable energy in the past few years, and are back on top as the world’s leading investor in clean energy. But more can and must be done to further develop our own energy resources and transition to cleaner sources of energy.

President Obama has laid out a Blueprint for an energy strategy that does just that. His plan, which relies on American-made energy and the skills of American workers, will improve our national security, grow our economy, and create jobs, while making sure our environment and the health of our citizens aren’t put at risk.

In his State of the Union address on Tuesday night, and again today at a UPS facility in Las Vegas, President Obama said that the country needs an “all-out, all of the above strategy that develops every available source of American energy—a strategy that’s cleaner, cheaper, and full of new jobs.”

We’ve taken steps to reduce our dependence on foreign oil and today, American oil production is at its highest level in eight years. In 2011, we relied less on foreign oil than in any of the past 16 years.


Implementing a clean energy standard: The centerpiece of President Obama’s plan to develop and use more clean energy calls for establishing a “clean energy standard,” which would require utility companies to produce a larger percentage of their electricity from clean energy sources over time –including renewable sources such as wind, solar, biomass, hydropower, and nuclear, among others. With this requirement in place, clean sources would account for 80 percent of our electricity by 2035. Besides reducing carbon emissions, implementing a standard would create a larger domestic market for developing new, innovative energy technologies—and the many jobs that would come along with it.

Targeted tax incentives: To further support a growing clean energy industry, President Obama’s Blueprint calls for renewing and extending a number of already successful tax incentives. This includes tax incentives for clean energy manufacturing, which could create up to 100,000 jobs, and the Production Tax Credit to support investment in the deployment of clean energy technologies.

Opening public lands: Developing the new technologies we need is only one part of the clean energy equation. The other part requires putting the new technologies to use. To answer this call, the Department of the Interior has committed to issuing permits on public lands that will enable the generation of 10 gigawatts of renewable generation capacity – enough to power 3 million homes.

Powering the U.S. military with renewable energy: Just because Congress hasn’t moved forward with establishing a clean energy economy doesn’t prevent all progress toward using more renewable energy. To this end, President Obama announced that the Department of the Navy will make a 1 gigawatt renewable energy purchase—the largest purchase of its kind in history, and enough energy to power 250,000 homes.

Additionally, the Air Force is installing solar panels on its bases and developing cleaner, more efficient ways to fuel the military’s aircraft. In 2010, the Air Force flew an A-10 Thunderbolt entirely on alternative fuels, a first for the military.



shale gas in the US

Natural gas: The United States is the world’s leading producer of natural gas, and we have a nearly 100-year supply of it. President Obama has directed his administration to safely develop this gas, called shale gas, in a way that will create up to 600,000 jobs by the end of the decade, according to independent experts. He also called for new rules requiring companies to disclose the chemicals they use when accessing and removing shale gas on public lands to make sure public health is protected.

To find ways to harness this abundant supply of natural gas once it’s out of the ground, President Obama’s plan proposes incentives to encourage greater use of natural gas to power our cars, trucks, and busses such as developing transportation corridors that allow trucks fueled by liquefied natural gas to transport goods. In addition, the Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy is planning a research competition that asks our country’s brightest scientists, engineers and entrepreneurs to develop new technologies that will put natural gas to good use. This includes searching for new ways to convert and store natural gas, new technologies that use natural gas to power our vehicles, and better ways to protect the air we breathe.

Offshore oil and gas: President Obama directed the Department of Interior to finalize a national offshore energy plan that makes 75 percent of our potential offshore resources available for development by opening new areas for drilling in the Gulf of Mexico and Alaska. Today, the President took a concrete step forward to develop our offshore oil and gas resources by directing the Department of Interior to hold a lease sale in the Gulf of Mexico, which could lead to the production of 1 billion barrels of oil and 4 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.



Friend —

Four years ago today, I joined my Uncle Teddy and thousands of excited students at American University to endorse Barack Obama as the next president of the United States.

Barack Obama had stirred something in young people and the young at heart. I saw the passion in my own teenage children, and I heard it from a different generation of people who said they felt like they did when my father ran for president.

We felt strongly that we needed to elect a president who urged us to believe in ourselves, who could tie that belief to our highest ideals, and who understood that together we can do great things.

Four years later, as I think about what first inspired me to support Barack Obama, I’m proud we have a president who has fought hard for the values Teddy held dear, and stood up on issues that matter.

Teddy understood that the challenges of health care aren’t political — they are personal. That’s why he fought for 40 years to make health care a right and not a privilege for American families.

How proud he would have been to see his candidate sign the Affordable Care Act into law as president, giving all Americans the security of knowing that their health care will be there when they need it most.

In his speech four years ago today, Teddy reminded us all of that bright light of hope and possibility that shines even in the darkest hours. He knew that with Barack Obama as president, America would shine again. I don’t think he would be surprised to know that four years later, this president would have ended the war in Iraq, repealed “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” and guaranteed women the right to equal pay for equal work.

The 2012 election will be harder than the last. As you think about what role you can play this time, I want you to remember that when Teddy joined this campaign, it wasn’t just Barack Obama who drew him in.

It was you.

The possibility of a campaign run by ordinary people determined to change our country for the better and willing to work as hard as necessary inspired him then, and it’s what inspires me today.

Thanks for all you do.

I’ll see you out there,


P.S. — If you’d like to take some time to watch that speech, it’s here.


From James Hansen:

Cowards in Our Democracies, Part 1, a discussion of why I submitted a Witness Statement to an Information Rights Tribunal in the UK, is available on my web site.



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