President Bush made fine use of a manufacturing backdrop Tuesday to reinforce the need for a comprehensive strategy to achieve energy security for America. Stopping at GM and Ford plants near Kansas City, he focused on alternative fuels and hybrid-fuel vehicles as one approach for easing America’s reliance on foreign petroleum. Most impressive is that he kept the environmental and energy goals grounded in reality, instead of the magical — or government-imposed — solutions that some favor. Here are a few notable comments from the President’s appearance at the Ford plant:
“An energy strategy has got to be more than just an automobile strategy. I mean, we can reduce dependency on oil — and we will; we’re still going to need oil. And therefore, I think it makes a lot of sense for us to continue to explore for oil and gas in environmentally friendly ways here in America. “We got a lot of coal in America. We’ve got about 250 years worth of coal. If you want to be less dependent on foreign sources of energy, it seems to make sense to develop the energy reserves you have at home. And — but coal burns — doesn’t burn cleanly. And so, therefore, we’re spending a sizeable amount of money on clean coal technologies. I believe that within a relatively quick period of time, we will have the ability to use coal to fire our electricity without emitting greenhouse gases or pollutants, zero-emission coal-fired plants.” “I strongly believe in nuclear power. If you’re somebody who is concerned about greenhouse gases, it seems like to me that it’s logical then that you support the use of nuclear power. A nuclear power plant is the ultimate source of renewable fuels, and it has zero emissions. It makes a lot of sense to me to promote a nuclear power the engineering technologies have developed to the point where they’re safe.”
President Bush is advocating a broad-based strategy, relying on existing resources and infrastructure, expanded through technological progress. His approach matches very well the goals and proposals laid out in the NAM’s “Energy Security for American Competitiveness,” our comprehensive energy plan. And he chose a manufacturing facility to make the case, taking the time to see the assembly lines in action. All in all, a good day, a good message, and a great setting, Mr. President.
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