the Navy greener than
At a recent reception held by Environmental Defense Fund
Panetta explained that his Department of Defense is facing a budget shortfall of more than $3 billion because of unexpected fuel costs. "I have a deep interest in more sustainable and efficient energy options," he said. Secretary Panetta went on to describe how the U. S. military will be called on for humanitarian assistance in the face of rising seas, longer droughts, and more frequent and the severe natural disasters that are a result of global warming.
Secretary Panetta was followed on the podium by
Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, who has served since May 2009. In 1987, the
Harvard-trained lawyer became the youngest governor in the nation when he won
He emphasized that "drilling alone will never solve our national security concerns
over foreign oil." Mabus
went on to announce that the Navy has made a commitment to get 50% of its
energy from renewable sources, like biofuels, solar and wind, by 2025. That's
the most ambitious goal for renewable energy in the country--higher even than
Mabus pointed out that the Navy has always led in pioneering new sources of fuel, whether it was from moving from sail to coal in the 1850s, to oil in the 20 th century, and nuclear energy in the 1950s. "Every time, there were doubters and naysayers," he said forcefully. "Every time. And every single time, they were wrong and they will be wrong again this time."
Mabus vigorously countered the argument that renewable energy is more expensive. "Well of course it is! Every new technology is more expensive. What if we hadn't started using computers because they were more expensive than typewriters? What if we hadn't started using cell phones because they were more expensive than land lines? Where would we be?"
Both Panetta and Mabus are on the front lines again--in a battle that will help us curb carbon emissions and lead us to energy independence. Anyone want to join the notoriously craven science deniers at the Heartland Institute in their claim that any leader who fights global warming is no better than tyrants and killers like Charles Manson, Osama bin Laden and Unabomber Kacyznski?
Go ahead. Make Secretary Mabus' day.
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