General Wesley Clark said the United States is sending $300 billion a year abroad to pay for imported oil in his keynote presentation at Senator Dorgans Renewable Energy Summit.
Thanks to Senator Dorgan and his staff for working with NDARE (North Dakota Alliance for Renewable Energy), Bismarck State College, Great Plains Energy Corridor, and KLJ to organize this important event. Merging more home grown, home owned, renewable energy helps us preserve our non-renewable energy sources, improves national security, is better for our environment and helps grow our economy in a more sustainable manner. North Dakota has all the resources, renewable and non-renewable, to help lead the way to the new energy age.
General Clark is a very dynamic individual that is investing his time and money into developing a diverse group of companies to produce energy from all sectors.
Board members of NDARE had a working lunch with General Wesley Clark after his keynote presentation. Kim Christianson on left, Mindy Grieve, General Clark, NDARE President Patrice Lahlum, Mike Williams
The other keynote speaker was DOE undersecretary Elizabeth Johnson. She’s a very accomplished engineer that is helping to co-ordinate the Department of Energy efforts to increase energy efficiency while expanding use and production of renewable energies to extend our countries non-renewable resources.
Here are two links to articles on the event: http://www.grandforksherald.com/event/article/id/165245/ and
Here’s the GF Herald article:
Former presidential candidate calls N.D. the future energy capital of North America
North Dakota is the future energy capital of North America, Gen. Wesley Clark said Monday.
By: Teri Finneman, Forum Communications Co.
General Wesley Clark speaks at the Democratic National Committee winter meeting in Washington, Friday, February 2, 2007. (CHUCK KENNEDY/MCT)
BISMARCK — North Dakota is the future energy capital of North America, Gen. Wesley Clark said Monday.
The former presidential candidate was among the featured speakers at the state’s Renewable Energy Action Summit at Bismarck State College.
About 200 people attended the event to learn more about energy development in North Dakota and how to network.
Clark, who now serves as chairman of consulting, investment banking and energy organizations, said the country needs to change direction with energy.
He said the United States is sending $300 billion a year abroad to pay for imported oil.
“That’s $1,000 for every man, woman and child in America so we can import oil from other countries,” Clark said. “We cannot move forward as a nation paying $300 billion a year out of our economy to other countries to support our energy consumption.”
There needs to be a vision to move to a sophisticated policy that strengthens the country’s domestic energy production, he said.
The Bakken formation is the big story in North Dakota now, said Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., but developing wind, biomass, biofuel and solar energy will be the story 10 years from now.
North Dakota has the capability to produce more kinds of energy than any other state in America, he said.
Kristina Johnson of the U.S. Department of Energy called North Dakota “a remarkable state.”
“It does have all of the different kinds of energy that we need for the future,” she said.
Kim Christianson, director of the Great Plains Energy Corridor, gave a state overview. Regarding wind, the state went from an installed capacity of less than 5 megawatts in 2003 to 1,300 megawatts now, he said.
There are more than 820 turbines operating in the state, which ranks 10th nationally in installed wind capacity, he said.
North Dakota has five ethanol plants operating and produces more than 350 million gallons per year, a tenfold increase since 2005.
Discussing biomass, Christianson said the state ranks No. 1 in potential for energy crops.
The amount of oil recoverable in western North Dakota amounts to less than one year’s worth of U.S. oil consumption, he said.
“So, it just kind of brings home we need to be looking at a lot of different resources,” Christianson said.
John Brauner, a retired Jamestown College biology professor, said he attended Monday’s summit to become more aware.
“Renewable energy is where we need to be,” he said. “We need to be working to promote in any way possible to make renewable energy more acceptable economically as well as psychologically for people.”
Gaylon Baker of Dickinson attended the summit to learn more about geothermal opportunities.
“We have to figure out how to be more diverse in our energy approach,” said Baker, the executive vice president of Stark Development Corp. “Our challenge continues to be getting the product to market.”
Dorgan hopes to see an energy bill on the Senate floor by the end of summer. He emphasized the need for a modern transmission system.
Dorgan and Rep. Earl Pomeroy, D-N.D., also support tax incentives for renewable energy development.
Finneman is a multimedia reporter for Forum Communications Co., which owns the Herald.