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While President Obama clearly won last night’s Town Hall debate, the biggest loser was not Mitt Romney. Rather, it was the environment.

It was disconcerting to hear both men argue about who could drill more on Federal land, or who could mine more dirty coal.

Renewable energy like solar, wind, and geothermal only received lip service from both candidates with no specific plans divulged.

Romney did talk about energy independence. But his plan involves more dependence on drilling and mining – both processes are environmentally hostile to the land, air, and water. Note that Romney keeps talking about North American energy independence – not (U.S.) American energy independence. Is his plan to replace Saudi Arabia with Canada as our source of dirty energy? While I’d rather see our dollars go north to help fund Canada’s (gasp!) socialized medical care than have it go to the sheiks, a far better solution would be to help balance the trade deficit by promoting indigenous energy sources.

No single issue exists in isolation. Promoting clean energy development to make it affordable helps energy-dependent businesses, improves the health of Americans through clean air and water, and creates millions of jobs. I would have liked to see the President outline an Apollo-like program with specific energy independence goals that would include boosting the training of scientists and engineers in the energy field, promoting science in the elementary schools, and providing businesses with incentives for them to act as co-investors in this important initiative. This could all be paid for by the elimination of the billions of dollars we spend subsidizing dirty fuels.

We need not only to reduce our dependence on foreign oil, but we need to reduce our dependence on dirty fuel. Neither candidate convinced me that he has a plan.

Cross-Posted from

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Comment Preferences

  •  One candidate supports green energy (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gooserock, bluedust

    One candidate brags about his resolute dedication to fossil fuels only.

    So yeah, in the final analysis, the candidates are identical.

  •  Crowly had a climate change question (0+ / 0-)

    but they didn't get to it.  She said she just didn't have the time to get to the climate change question.

  •  The poor, the old and vulnerable (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Lots of concern for the guy making $249,999,99 though.

  •  What a crap diary (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bluedust, gramofsam1

    Read the transcript.  Obama was clearly the champion for the environment.  He championed solar and wind over and over, showed Romney off for opposing and wanting to do away with wind energy exploration altogether.

    Here are the salient parts of the debate:


    "Number three, we've got to control our own energy. Now, not only oil and natural gas, which we've been investing in; but also, we've got to make sure we're building the energy source of the future, not just thinking about next year, but ten years from now, 20 years from  now. That's why we've invested in solar and wind and biofuels, energy
     efficient cars."


    "Natural gas production is the highest it's been in decades. We have seen increases in coal production and coal employment. But what  I've also said is we can't just produce traditional source of energy.

     We've also got to look to the future. That's why we doubled fuel efficiency standards on cars. That means that in the middle of the  next decade, any car you buy, you're going to end up going twice as  far on a gallon of gas. That's why we doubled clean - clean energy
     production like wind and solar and biofuels.

    And all these things have contributed to us lowering our oil
     imports to the lowest levels in 16 years. Now, I want to build on that. And that means, yes, we still continue to open up new areas for drilling. We continue to make it a priority for us to go after  natural gas. We've got potentially 600,000 jobs and 100 years worth
     of energy right beneath our feet with natural gas.

    And we can do it in an environmentally sound way. But we've also got to continue to figure out how we have efficiency energy, because ultimately that's how we're going to reduce demand and that's what's going to keep gas prices lower.

    Now, Governor Romney will say he's got an all-of-the-above plan, but basically his plan is to let the oil companies write the energy  policies. So he's got the oil and gas part, but he doesn't have the  clean energy part. And if we are only thinking about tomorrow or the  next day and not thinking about 10 years from now, we're not going to  control our own economic future. Because China, Germany, they're  making these investments. And I'm not going to cede those jobs of the  future to those countries. I expect those new energy sources to be  built right here in the United States.

    So what I've tried to do is be consistent. With respect to
     something like coal, we made the largest investment in clean coal  technology, to make sure that even as we're producing more coal, we're  producing it cleaner and smarter. Same thing with oil, same thing  with natural gas."

    I marked the comment that discuss the environment, either direct or indirect.   This shows that your diary is complete BS, sorry to say.  Clean and efficient energy comments were a huge part of Obama's evening.   Your recollection is simply wrong, as the quotes I provided prove.  

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