Bipartisan Policy Center Announces New Energy Project Led by Former Senators Trent Lott, Byron Dorgan, General Jim Jones and William K. Reilly

Mar 30, 2011, 09:00 ET from Bipartisan Policy Center

Group to Focus on Energy Security in Context of Overall Energy Policy

WASHINGTON, March 30, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) today announced that it is forming a new BPC Energy Project to be led by former Senators Trent Lott (R-MS) and Byron Dorgan (D-ND), and by former National Security Advisor General Jim Jones (Ret.) and Oil Spill Commission Co-chair William K. Reilly.  The group will be releasing additional details at a formal project launch event on April 12.

The four leaders issued the following statement today:

"Recent events—from unprecedented unrest in the Middle East and North Africa to the Japanese nuclear crisis to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill —demand a thorough reassessment of America's energy security.  

"Without question, our economy—in fact our way of life—is highly dependent on access to stable, affordable supplies of energy.  In response to the crises of the 1970s, the United States adopted policy changes that cut the oil intensity of the U.S. economy in half and reorganized government priorities and structures to address the new reality.  While some energy goals were achieved, many were not.  Since that time, energy policy has stumbled, marked by uncertain goals and shifting priorities, an inability to measure the impact of our choices, and a stark lack of accountability across the government.  

"New domestic natural gas supplies and heartening progress on clean energy technologies present great opportunities.  However, our economy will continue to be threatened by uncontrollable events unless we seize this moment to begin a gradual yet decisive shift toward sustainable domestic energy resources.

"In our view, these recent events, challenges, and past failures, demand a fundamental reassessment of America's energy policy goals, decision-making structures, and policies—a reevaluation that places energy security at the very center of energy policy.  We have each witnessed and actively participated in dozens of energy planning exercises over the past twenty years.  Our nation does not want for a lack of ideas.  What we suffer is a lack of discipline and follow-through.  We believe a better articulation of our national goals, and clear mechanisms to measure our progress and clear accountability, are needed to improve our nation's energy security.

"Just as we effectively responded to the challenges of the Cold War, the space race, globalization and terrorism, so too we must unify as a nation in a bipartisan manner around this new era in energy security.  We look forward to working with our government and our nation's great resource of scientists, engineers, business leaders and indeed all citizens, to rededicate the nation to addressing this critical challenge."

About the Bipartisan Policy Center:

In 2007, former U.S. Senate Majority Leaders Howard Baker, Tom Daschle, Bob Dole, and George Mitchell formed the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) to develop and promote solutions that can attract the public support and political momentum to achieve real progress. Currently, the BPC focuses on issues including health care, energy, national and homeland security, transportation and economic policy. For more information, please visit our website: http://www.bipartisanpolicy.org/.

SOURCE Bipartisan Policy Center



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