Protecting our environment and developing sufficient energy infrastructure should be a national priority. To secure America's energy future, our nation must promote new industries that will help develop more efficient and affordable renewable fuel technologies. We also need to do a better job of conserving our energy resources and preserving our environment.
As an assistant operations officer for a helicopter task force in Iraq, I saw my fellow Guardsmen and soldiers risk life and limb to maintain diesel fuel supply lines. Energy is one of the most precious battlefield resources, but it is risky and expensive to deliver in combat zones. As a result, the United States military has played a leading role in developing cleaner and more efficient ways to generate and use energy through innovations such as homegrown biofuels, mobile solar units and lighter and more powerful batteries.
That' s why I am advocating for further development of biofuels at the Department of Defense.
Our military and government needs to pursue clean energy to strengthen our national security, grow our economy and protect our children's future.
I support a diverse approach to energy policy that takes advantage of the innovation and ingenuity of American businesses to create new, reliable and cost-effective energy sources. Our state is already a leader in the clean energy sector. A study by Clean Energy Trust found there are nearly 100,000 clean energy jobs across Illinois, including jobs in solar, biofuels, efficient heating and cooling, LED lighting, smart meters, advanced batteries and many other technologies. Illinois has also become the heart of wind industry in North America, with 14 wind energy companies' headquarters or regional offices located throughout the greater Chicagoland area.
I've partnered with organizations, such as Gas Technology Institute, to work toward energy independence and making renewable fuels more prevalent. I also advocated for these priorities in an op-ed in The Daily Herald.
Investments in the expansion of renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar, as well as in the development of new conservation methods, not only help preserve our environment for future generations, but can save American families thousands of dollars every year.