Ben Ray Luján, Public Regulation Commissioner and the Democratic nominee for Congress in New Mexico's 3rd District, made the following statement on T. Boone Pickens' visit to New Mexico today to hold a town hall on energy.
"Today, T. Boone Pickens is visiting New Mexico to discuss his plan for energy independence. While our solutions differ, we both agree that our country must end our dependence on foreign oil by changing the way we generate energy.
The United States imports 70 percent of our oil, much of which comes from unstable and hostile regimes. We must become energy independent and produce clean, renewable energy in the United States.
Our energy crisis requires a comprehensive approach. We should pass 'Use it or Lose it' legislation to require oil companies to use the 68 million available leased acres to increase domestic production, increase fuel efficiency in our automobiles and crack down on speculators and market manipulation.
Most importantly, our country must aggressively pursue renewable energy production. We must shift the billions of dollars in tax breaks for oil companies to renewable energy development, including solar and wind. I'll work to extend the Production Tax Credit to encourage economic growth and job creation in the renewable energy industry by promoting stability. We can create new jobs in New Mexico by using our abundant natural resources to lead the way on solar and wind production. Our national laboratories can conduct research and develop solutions to storing and transmitting renewable energy.
I'm glad that T. Boone Pickens is talking about solutions to our energy crisis and recognizing New Mexico's role in the future of energy generation."
T. Boone Pickens is holding a town hall on energy in Albuquerque on Wednesday, September 10. Pickens will discuss his plan to reduce our dependence on foreign oil.
As a New Mexico Public Regulation Commissioner and a former chairman of the Commission, Ben Ray Luján has been a leader on energy solutions.
Commissioner Luján has been a leading proponent of renewable energy development. As chairman of the Public Regulation Commission, he fought to require utility companies to expand and diversify their use of renewable energy. When the Bush Administration refused to address global warming, Commissioner Luján joined with elected officials in California, Oregon and Washington to create regional solutions for global warming.