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Issue Position: Energy Security and Jobs

Issue Position

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Energy Security for America, Jobs for Iowa

Economic growth requires a stable and secure energy supply and is a national security imperative. We must develop our own domestic resources of coal, natural gas, oil, nuclear, wind, bio and solar to balance out our national energy portfolio. This will make us less dependent on foreign nations for energy, and more capable in dealing with typical spikes in energy costs and the inconsistencies in supply by some sources. Because energy powers our economy, it is a national security issue that we must move quickly to fix.

We've got to get to work on building new, clean and cheap energy sources like nuclear power. Let's open up new leases to drill off-shore that can bring billions of barrels of domestic oil and cubic feet of natural gas online. We can then use the royalties earned to invest back into alternative fuels like hydrogen, wind, solar and clean coal, with recirculation of heat by-products used by nearby industry to increase the efficiency of coal fired plants. Coal is our nation's most abundant, cheapest and efficient energy resource, already providing half of America's power needs. With more than 200 years of available coal reserves -- the equivalent of 3 times Saudi Arabia's proven oil reserves -- we have to make use of this energy resource to make America energy independent. As we develop other sources of electricity, coal can be harnessed for liquefied fuel.

In the Midwest, we have abundant wind resources that should continue to be developed, as well as ethanol from corn and switchgrass, bio and soy bio-diesel (being mindful of food supply), manure digesters and landfill waste management. We have one of the finest nuclear facilities with the Duane Arnold plant in Palo, Iowa, and it should be permitted to bring another plant online.

In Congress, I will oppose the current Cap and Trade legislation because it will drive up energy costs on Iowa families and businesses with a final result of sending millions of more jobs overseas. That's a policy Iowa can't afford. It is a flawed commitment to meeting arbitrary carbon emission goals that sacrifice so much without a guaranteed outcome, especially as major carbon producers like China and India fail to cap their own emissions. It also tasks the slow-moving federal bureaucracy with deciding what electricity sources into which we will invest time, intellect, and financial resources, creating the possibility that we will miss new technology or research avenues that have yet to be realized. Additionally, it creates new national building mandates that could increase development and other costs here in Iowa, and hurt fixed income seniors and lower income renters.


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