Energy Security – A thoughtful appoach

Energy Security in the 21st Century: A New National Strategy 

Participants:
Madeleine Albright, former Secretary of State, and Principal, The Albright Group, LLC
Carol Browner, former Administrator, Environmental Protection Agency, and Principal, The Albright Group, LLC
John D. Podesta, President and Chief Executive Officer, Center for American Progress

“We are addicted to oil, and the oil is coming from the most dangerous places in the world,” said former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright at a panel today, hosted by the Center for American Progress. Emphasizing the importance of energy security in U.S. foreign policy, the event coincided with the release of a new report titled “Energy Security In the 21st Century.”

The report was produced by the National Security Task Force on Energy, a diverse group of politicians, policy experts, and academics. John Podesta, President of the Center for American Progress, introduced the report and joined Albright on the panel. Joining them on the panel were former EPA Administrator Carol Browner and former Congressman Tom Downey.

Podesta’s opening remarks highlighted the growing threat that a mismanaged energy security strategy poses. Pointing out that the U.S. addiction to oil has increased even as oil has become more expensive, he said that the U.S. is compromising its foreign policy objectives by funding unstable and hostile regimes. Podesta also called climate change “a profound national security problem” that could cause significant instability in many parts of the world. Proliferation associated with nuclear energy and a vulnerable global energy infrastructure were also cited as threats.  (For more click here)

Short-sighted and short-term solutions to the energy security problem will not be enough. “There is no magic wand. We have to develop a comprehensive approach,” Albright urged. The released report details elements of a comprehensive solution, including a substantial commitment to reducing dependency on foreign oil. According to Podesta, “cellulosic ethanol is the most promising path forward for getting us off our addiction to oil.”

Browner, in addition to improving our biofuels capacity, called for pragmatic approaches to nuclear and coal power, emphasizing safety, and working in concert with a national carbon trading system. “The idea that we are going to drill our way out of the problem,” she stressed, “is wrong.”  more