Frank Luntz Republican Playbook -- Searchable Text-Version: PART IX "AN ENERGY POLICY FOR THE 2lst CENTURY"
In the ninth installment of the text version of the Luntz Republican playbook, Frank leads the crusade for nuclear energy and drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR).
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AN ENERGY POLICY FOR THE 2lst CENTURY
THE EIGHT ENERGY COMMUNICATION GUIDELINES FOR 2005
1) A threat to Americaís energy security is a threat to national security. Our "dependence" on OPEC and foreign oil entangles us in the Middle East and makes us dependent on countries that are hostile to America and American interests. The greater Americaís dependence on foreign energy, the greater the threat to American national security. This is the single most important communication recommendation.
2) Articulate the need to move toward American energy independence and energy self-sufficiency. It is the optimistic, hopeful flip-side of the national security argument. It is not enough to say what we donít want. We need to offer a positive goal.
3) We need to take a BALANCED approach to solving our energy needs through DIVERSITY of supply. These two principles are closely linked and crucial to demonstrating that your approach is both long-term and comprehensive.
4) Reject talk about "choosing between more energy and a cleaner environment." Assert clearly that "we have to do both." The key principle is "responsible energy exploration." And remember, itís NOT drilling for oil. Itís responsible energy exploration.
5) Innovation and 21st Century technology should be at the core of your energy policy. Articulate how 21st Century technology and innovation will provide the solution to our current energy situation. The following sound-bite works best: "We have the best scientists, the best engineers and the best technicians in the world. Itís time to put them to work to develop a 21st Century energy program that leads America toward energy independence and self-sufficiency."
6) Stress alternatives that are CLEAN, EFFICIENT, and AFFORDABLE. Alternative sources of energy arenít really viable unless they meet these three criteria. Stress that increasing energy supplies MUST be done by "using energy more cleanly and efficiently and ultimately making it more affordable."
7) There is an important role for conservation. Whether through technology that allows our products to burn energy more efficiently to an effort to get Americans to be more careful when and how they use energy, we do want conservation to play a role in our energy future. Any policy without conservation will fail the public opinion test.
8) We need to say yes to a comprehensive, common sense energy policy for the 21 Century. Itís time to hold accountable those who stand in the way refuse to accept the energy needs and the energy opportunities facing American now and in the future.
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It was a year of home heating fuel spikes, $50 a barrel for oil, and gasoline approaching $2.25 a gallon. It is not surprising that now, in 2005, over 70% of the American electorate believes the energy situation in this country is either in crisis or a significant problem. The prospect of somehow, someway reducing Americaís dependence on foreign oil and developing/diversifying Americaís own energy sources are top priorities among Republicans and Democrats alike. You read that correctly. For the first time in recent memory, energy has become a bipartisan issue.
AMERICANS TALK ENERGY
What Americans want more than anything else is less dependence on foreign oil. They know we can never be fully energy self-sufficient, but they want more energy developed right here in America because, in their own words, dependence on foreign oil threatens both our national and economic security.
But while Republicans owned the issue a year ago, that advantage has slipped away. John Kerryís repeated public focus on the importance of reducing American dependence on Middle Eastern oil and his famous comment that "we should rely on American ingenuity and not the Saudi Royal Family, "at the Democrat convention struck a raw nerve in the American psyche. Americans forgot that it was the Republicans who offered a comprehensive, long-term strategy and that it was the Democrats who kept saying no, no, no.
You need to retake this issue now before the next spike at the pump and before the next surge in our home beating bills. There are four principles that matter most: energy self- sufficiency/independence, national security, new technology/innovation, and a balanced approach that will take America well into the 2lst Century.
1) Make it about Energy Self-Sufficiency and Independence. The energy debate is ripe for partisan picking and the Democrats were smart to use it during their convention. Americans want to hear about solutions to foreign energy dependency and are desperate for big ideas and bold solutions. Energy policy is now a public priority and Democrats put themselves on the side of the future. Americans loathe the idea of being reliant on the Middle East for our energy needs and they were waiting for someone to tell them so. This was John Kerryís single best line at the convention, and it continues to resonate even today:
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DEMOCRAT WORDS THAT WORK
I want an America that relies on its own ingenuity and innovation -- not the Saudi royal family. Our energy plan for a stronger America will invest in new technologies and alternative fuels and the cars of the future -- so that no young American in uniform will ever be held hostage to our dependence on oil from the Middle East.
Americans are evenly and bitterly divided about an assortment of political issues, but nearly all of them agree that our nation sí current energy policy is behind-the-times and needs a new, 21st Century approach. Right now, the Democrats are exhibiting perfect pitch when it comes to their energy message. They understand that if you play on American fears towards OPEC, Saudi Arabia and the Middle East, while also appealing to American ideals of invention and innovation, they will have a compelling message. But fortunately for Republicans, the Democratic message does not match their policy. If the GOP wants to gain the advantage you need to match the optimism of the Democrats message -- and that begins with a clear statement that the status quo is unacceptable.
2) Current energy policy threatens national security. Americans believe that our current energy policy is the culprit not only for skyrocketing gas prices and increased pollution but also for our entanglement in the Middle East and therefore endangering national security. Thatís why they want a NEW direction. There are two phrases that need to be specifically articulated if you want the energy issue back: energy independence and energy self-sufficiency. And be sure to tap into feelings of American exceptionalism and ingenuity to seal the deal with the swing voters:
GOP WORDS THAT WORK
We have the best scientists, the best engineers and the best technicians in the world. Itís time to put them to work to develop a 21st century energy program that leads America toward energy independence and self-sufficiency. If we can send a man to the moon, we can develop alternative sources of fuel right here on earth, and stop our dependence on Saudi oil.
Americans HATE our dependence on foreign and Middle Eastern oil, and they will respond favorably to anyone who offers an alternative:
THE DEMOCRAT ATTACK
No young American in uniform should ever be held hostage to Americaís Dependence on oil in the Middle East. Weíre going to liberate ourselves. Weíre going to make ourselves more energy independent.
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WORDS THAT WORK
American dependence on foreign oil threatens our national security. When more than halt of our energy needs comes from foreign sources, particularly OPEC, that alone is a security risk. OPEC has already slowed down production and tried to gouge us on prices. What happens if they decide to limit sales further? We have barely 45 days worth of oil in our Strategic Petroleum Reserve, Imagine what would happen if that reserve runs out?
3) The key to energy independence is A BALANCED APPROACH. If you neglect to discuss the importance of conservation, you will appear anti-environment. Your challenge is to make the case that energy exploration and the environment can co-exist. In fact, they can thrive. The Democrats will by to bury your energy solutions by focusing on whatever is the most controversial element of your program. Thatís why you must stress again and again that you support a "truly comprehensive energy solution," from energy exploration and diversifying resources to research and conservation.
CHENEY WORDS THAT WORK
"Weíre still subject to the international marketplace because we import over half of the oil that we use in this country. And we badly need to develop more resources. We need to invest in new technologies. We need to look for ways to take advantage of the research thatís been done and take advantage of our basic energy resources that weíve got here at home."
EVEN BETTER ENERGY LANGUAGE
Our energy problems are largely the result of shortsighted domestic policies. The problem has been years in the making, and it will take years to solve. We are committed to the dependable, affordable and environmentally clean production of energy for Americaís future. We are committed to an energy policy that enhances national security. I know we can do it.
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ANWR: A SOLUTION TO AMERICAN ENERGY DEPENDENCE
Any discussion of energy must begin with the core principle that when it comes to oil, gas and electricity, America must not depend on any foreign nation. That is the single strongest argument you have for exploration in ANWR. Especially now, given the turmoil in the Middle East, the importance of American energy independence is clearer than ever.
GETTING TO ANWR
The Principle: Making America more energy independent
The Problem: Americaís dependence on foreign oil
1) Discover new, American sources of energy
2) Ensure a diversity of energy sources
The Answer - Exploring and developing a tiny fraction of ANWR
Getting to ANWR as a "solution" is the road best traveled. However, a word to the wise before we (metaphorically) drill too deeply: you should not present this as a silver bullet to American energy issues. It should instead be presented as but one component of a comprehensive energy policy that will address Americansí desire for dependency, diversity and ultimate energy independence. Discuss the entire policy, from energy exploration and diversifying resources to research and conservation measures. Americans will look more favorably upon ANWR exploration if they know that you have this balanced (and affordable) approach.
For in the end, the challenge is dependency and ANWR represents security.
Letís start with debunking the myths surrounding ANWR:
* Hardly anyone -- an incredible 87% of Americans -- knows what the letters ANWR stand for;
* 73% donít even know what state itís in; and
* Just over 50% of Americans admit they know absolutely nothing at all about it.
There is a perception in Washington that Americans are ready to rise up and take to the streets to oppose energy exploration. But the intensity of opposition by the environmental special interest groups does not represent the breadth of public opposition. Like much of Washington, the perception of a potential uprising is a myth. Rather than having to overcome negative perceptions or preconceived notions, you have the opportunity to define this issue and shape those perceptions.
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In the years prior to 9/11, true support for exploration in ANWR hovered around the 40% level. Today, support stands above a majority (53%) nationally before a discussion of the topic, and a remarkable 67% of Americans support exploration and development of ANWR after hearing the pros and cons.
Even more remarkable is the percentage of opposition support which stands -- after the pro and con education effort: only 20% strongly oppose ANWR development (31% overall). We provided positive and negative information and facts that both sides are using, and after weighing the pros and cons, Americans move sharply in favor of oil exploration in ANWR the more they learn.
Your job is to educate the public on this issue. With facts comes increased support for ANWR exploration. Hereís what you need to know:
1) It is all about REDUCING OUR PEPENDENCE ON OPEC, MIDDLE EASTERN AND FOREIGN OIL. Americans loathe the idea of being DEPENDENT (use this word as opposed to "relying") on another country -- any country. This is especially true when they find out just how much we depend on foreign countries for our energy needs. The fact is, most Americans donít know exactly where we get the majority of our oil and how much we need to purchase every day. This one fact alone turns people in favor of ANWR exploration.
And when you talk about foreign dependency, "the OPEC oil cartel" evokes the most distain from Americans, followed by "Middle Eastern oil producers" and finally Ďforeign oil producers" for that matter. OPEC is viewed as an enemy -- and with $40 or $50 dollars a barrel for oil, can you blame Americans for their anger and frustration? And if dependency is the problem and national security the threat, ANWR is increasingly viewed as the solution.
Reducing our dependence on foreign oil is about more than just cost or national pride. A full 69% of Americans are more angered by the fact that America is so dependent on foreign oil than the actual cost of gasoline at the pump. The dependence factor is seen as a direct threat to our national security. ALWAYS stress the importance of national security and link it to our dependence on foreign oil. This is a simple three-step fact-based process:
(1) America imports more than 55 percent of the oil we consume;
(2) This dependence on foreign oil threatens our national security;
(3) This dependence on foreign oil threatens our economy.
These facts arenít news to most of Washington but it is a real shock to most Americans. Once they are made aware of this dependence, their perspective changes completely. The threat to national security over the lack of American oil independence is one of the best arguments to influence those who are initially skeptical or opposed to greater domestic oil production.
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WORDS THAT WORK
Reducing our dependence on foreign oil must be a top priority for the President and Congress.
America needs American oil. We need to develop our energy sources right here in America and not depend on foreign and Middle Eastern oil for our economic security.
Oil from ANWR would reduce American dependence on OPEC and Middle Eastern oil. ANWR represents a secure American supply of oil that could help reduce U.S. demand for foreign oil for 25 years or more.
EVEN MORE WORDS THAT WORK
Itís pretty obvious that the area in the world that we most heavily rely on today for our oil supply is a very unstable part of the world. Iraq, Saudi Arabia, all of the Middle Eastern countries where the majority of the oil that comes to the United States is produced, is the part of the world where all of the major acts of violence are taking place today.
Itís a part of the world where there are a lot of people who donít like Americans. At the drop of a hat we could see a change in policy in the Middle East directed towards America from the standpoint of supplying us with the oil that we need to grow the economy of this country, to heat the homes of this country, and to allow our individuals to have the quality of life that they do in America.
2) Talk about the reality of BALANCE between Responsible Energy Exploration and Minimal Impact op. the Environment. While Americans definitely care passionately about the environment, they absolutely agree that we need to strike a balance between our environmental goals and our goal of less dependence on foreign oil. They also believe that the two are not mutually exclusive:
"We can have both greater energy independence AND a healthy environment"
Two-thirds (67%) of Americans believe that, "by using 21st century technology and advanced engineering that already exists, ANWR can be developed and the environment protected." So explain how energy exploration and the environment can co-exist and THRIVE. The environmental rhetoric on the impact of oil drilling is initially compelling, but our testing shows that it does not withstand scrutiny. Enumerate and tick off the two best examples and evidence:
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1) The North Slopeís petroleum industry is the cleanest, most technologically advanced and most heavily regulated in the world. Facilities are designed for minimal environmental impact.
2) The experience at Prudhoe Bay has proven that oil drilling does not harm wildlife. In fact, the Central Arctic caribou herd at Prudhoe Bay has grown from 3,000 to 25,000 during the past 20 years, while oil has been produced in the area.
WORDS THAT WORK
If weíre going to have a vibrant economy here at home, we need to protect our interests overseas. We need to move away from oil dependence and not have to ask Russia or Saudi Arabia "how much are you charging for a barrel of oil?"
As Americans, we should be able to set the standard for the environment through conservation, domestic exploration and environmentally friendly ways of doing things. Letís ask ourselves what weíre willing to pay for energy. We can do that if we combine all those things -- conservation, domestic exploration and an environmentally friendly approach -- and get to a place where every American feels comfortable.
3) Tell audiences what the part of ANWR in question REALLY looks like. Those opposed to ANWR exploration will claim that the Alaskan coastal plain is unspoiled beautiful wilderness, the last remaining Arctic ecosystem, and even the "Serengeti of the North." While eight million acres of ANWR are indeed beautiful and pristine, this land is already designated as wilderness. And more than nine million more acres are classified as a National Wildlife Refuge. No one can touch that land, ever.
However, when the public learns that the area being considered for oil development is no Serengeti, opinions begin to change. So tell them. They canít see the pictures ...so paint them with words:
1) It is a frozen, barren land for nine months of the year;
2) The sun doesnít shine AT ALL for eight weeks; and
3) Wind chills during the winter can drop to minus 110 degrees.
When they understand the truth, the opposition to oil exploration just peels away. And if you are smart enough to carry pictures of the frozen, flat, non-pristine plain to illustrate your point itís game, set and match.
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4) Technology drives both Exploration AND Environmental Protection. Americans have tremendous faith in technology. In fact, one of the most important concepts today is INNOVATION and what it means to the American economy and day-to-day American life. We have full faith and confidence that innovation and 21st Century technology can solve almost any problem. In fact, 71% of Americans share the opinion that "21st century technology and advanced engineering now exist that allows us to explore for oil and natural gas with minimal impact on the surrounding environment." "Thanks to advanced technology, responsible development and environmental protection can co-exist.
It is essential that you make your audiences aware of the incredible developments in energy exploration technology which will result in very minimal impact on the environment. The average American has no idea about the latest truly incredible technological developments. It is therefore crucial that you make the public aware of these advances.
WORDS THAT WORK
Exploration and development in the coastal plain of ANWR would take place in the frozen winter.
Using modern techniques, only a very small area will actually be impacted by the development. For example, we now have 3-D seismic technology to locate the oil quickly and effectively.
Thanks to innovative engineering, we now have directional drilling capabilities that allow you to drill horizontally, deep below the surface for miles to recover the oil -- without any impact whatsoever to the surface above.
And if there is no oil, the equipment would be dismantled and when the thaw came, there would be one small cap to show that any disturbance ever took place. The tundra would remain untouched. Like ice fishing on a frozen lake, the icehouse structure would not damage the water below.
In similar areas where successful oil exploration has occurred, caribou herds have remained healthy and have actually increased four-fold in number.
5) America does it better than anywhere else. It is important to emphasize to your audience that, while we have the highest environmental standards and technology in the world, other nations have few laws and little environmental oversight. The majority of Americans who are concerned with our environment have never truly considered the environmental impact of the oil that is drilled and imported from overseas.
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So ask them: "Who do you think cares more about the environment? When it comes to energy production, who do you think is more likely to act responsibly and prudently?"
Then tell them, "If you are truly concerned about the impact on nature, then what is done in Siberia is just as important as Alaska -- and America is leading the world in the science, technology and engineering of energy exploration."
WORDS THAT WORK
We must always keep in mind that we have the highest environmental standards and the most advanced technology in the world. Our nationís strict federal and state laws ensure that the environment is protected.
However, the same cannot be said for other nations. All too often, their technology is inferior and there is little or no environmental oversight.
Depending on our own energy resources will always be smarter, safer and cleaner than importing oil from nations with much lower standards.
Once again, a picture is worth a thousand words. After viewing before and after photos of explored areas, people are pleasantly surprised by the minimal impact - one small pipe sticking out from the surface -- that is possible with todayís technology. Whenever you can, bring photos to illustrate these advancements in technology.
6) Size matters. It is important for audiences to know just how small the actually developmental area truly is and how more than 99.8% of ANWR will never be touched:
-- When they find out that the area in question is the size of a typical farm or New Yorkís Central Park, they realize that this is not a major disruption of the area.
-- And if you tell them that if ANWR were the size of a basketball court and the area to developed is the equivalent of the size of five one-dollar bills on a basketball court," you remove another public concern.
-- But the best analogy: if ANWR was the New York Times, the area in question is the size of a single letter on the page.
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7) Expanding American sources of energy expands the American economy. When it comes to oil, economic considerations are a significant factor for many Americans. In fact, 63% of Americans are more likely to support ANWR development when they learn that it would create hundreds of thousands of jobs affecting virtually every state. But itís not only about the new jobs. Fully 62% believe oil from ANWR will help reduce the long-term U.S. trade deficit reduce the federal deficit and strengthen the value of the dollar. "Higher oil prices hurt everyone. Lower oil prices help everyone."
8) Alaskans Should Decide for Themselves. Exploration and development of ANWR has the support of Alaskans and their leaders -- and Americans have always sided with local control and location decisions over federal mandates. Fully two-out of three Americans (67%) are more supportive of ANWR development when learning that the vast majority of Alaskans support ANWR development. Itís just that simple -- and should be expressed plainly. If Alaskans, who will have to live with the consequences every single day, support ANWR exploration, who are we to say no?
WORDS THAT WORK
It should be up to the people who actually live in a particular community, the people who must breathe the air and drink the water, to decide whether or not to accept energy exploration in their communities. Washington should not control the environmental and energy policies for Alaska. We are talking about their community, their homes and their families.
The fact is, more than 75 percent of Alaskans favor exploration and production in ANWR. And the Inupiat Eskimos, who live in and near ANWR, strongly support onshore oil development on the coastal plain.
On the coastal plain, the area weíre talking about exploring, thereís a group of 270 natives that still live there. Theyíve got to be the toughest people in the world to survive in that kind of environment And unlike some of us who talk about the environment and say we like it because the viewís great or we like clean air or clean water, their lives literally depend on it. They hunt the animals, the caribou and they spear fish in the Arctic Ocean. Thatís how they survive. It is truly environmental dependency.
We asked them what we should do about ANWR. And their two-word answer was: drill it. Why? Because they know itís safe and will not damage the environment.
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9) The Words of Experts Yield Authority. Partisan rhetoric has run its course. Fully 84% will listen to the advice of experts -- scientists, engineers and professionals -- when weighing a decision on environmental concerns, and specifically ANWR. Experts, not politicians, provide the necessary credibility.
WORDS THAT WORK
We should trust the experts, not the politicians. If the scientists, engineers and professional experts, who have spent their lives studying energy and environmental issues, conclude that oil exploration will not have any impact whatsoever on the surrounding environment, that should carry more weight than the politicians who would rather play politics than find a long-term solution.
ANWR ARGUMENTS THAT WORK
(Arguments that make people "more likely" to support exploring for oil in ANWR.)
67% Most Eskimos who live in the area have expressed their support for development because of the jobs and economic benefits they would receive, as have the people of Alaska.
67% By using 21st century technology and advanced engineering that already exists, ANWR can be developed and the environment protected
65% ANWR represents a secure American supply of oil that could help reduce U.S. demand for foreign oil for 25 years or more.
64% We currently import more than half our oil from OPEC and other foreign sources. Oil from ANWR would reduce American dependence on OPEC and Middle Eastern oil.
63% ANWR has been determined by experts to be the single largest and most promising. area of unexplored oil reserves in North America.
63% ANWR development would create hundreds of thousands of American jobs affecting virtually every state.
63% In similar areas where oil exploration has occurred, caribou herds have remained healthy and have actually increased four-fold in number.
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ANWR STATEMENTS THAT AMERICANS ALREADY AGREE WITH...
84% We should trust the experts, not the politicians. If the scientists, engineers and professional experts conclude that oil exploration will not have any impact on the environment, that should carry more weight than the politicians who would rather play politics than find a long-term solution.
84% America needs American oil. We need to develop our energy resources right here in America and not depend on foreign and Middle Eastern oil for our economic security.
82% Reducing our dependence on foreign oil must be a top priority for the President and Congress.
71% 21st Century Technology and advanced engineering now exists that allows us to explore for oil and natural gas with minimal impact on the surrounding environment.
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ANWR: SECURING AMERICAíS ENERGY FUTURE
(a 15-minute speech that America wants to hear)
Have you checked your electricity bill lately? Sticker shock doesnít begin to describe what has happened to electricity prices. Remember how high gasoline prices were just a few months ago? Can we afford to have those high prices return?
Skyrocketing prices. Rolling blackouts. It didnít have to happen. We could have planned for the future. We could have been better prepared. Let me be as blunt and candid as I can. We should have done more. We didnít, and now weíre all paying -- at the pump and at the light switch.
Demand for energy in the United States is outstripping supply, and will continue to grow as our 21st century high-tech economy expands. Higher energy costs are squeezing family budgets, undermining farms and small businesses, jeopardizing jobs, and threatening the long-term health of our economy.
Itís time we face facts: we have an energy crisis in America. Sure, we arenít suffering through gas shortages or having difficulty keeping our houses warm -- this crisis is far more subtle, but it just as harmful. And we need answers. Environmentalists will tell you we can conserve our way out...we canít. The oil companies will tell you we can drill our way out.. .we canít do that either. Both of these solutions are too one-sided and too often the only things we talk about in this town. Itís time to bring some balance and some measured common-sense to our nationís great energy debate.
Itís time we balance energy conservation efforts with moves to produce more energy in this country in a safe an environmentally friendly manner.
But while there may be a shortage of energy, there is no shortage of hot air when it comes to real action. There are a lot of loud voices, a lot of shouting and finger pointing about what to do, but no one has come forward with a truly comprehensive plan that will address our energy needs not just for the next 10 months but for the next 10 years.
But before I offer a solution, and there is one, let me just offer you a few key facts:
Fact. As a nation, we have become too dependent on foreign oil. Currently, 60 percent of the oil consumed in the United States is imported from foreign sources. American families and industry are held hostage to OPEC to meet their energy needs. This is a national security nightmare waiting to happen. OPEC has already slowed down production and tried to gouge us on prices. What happens if they decide to limit sales further? We have barely 45 days worth of oil in our Strategic Petroleum Reserve. Imagine what would happen if that reserve runs out.
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We need less dependence on foreign fuel and more attention to developing our own secure, domestic energy supply. We need more American oil, more American gas, and more use of American clean-coal technology. This is the only way to guarantee an uninterrupted supply of energy when we need it.
Fact: Electric demand alone has risen by 25 percent in the past eight years, while power generation has increased a scant six percent. We have an economy that needs the electricity to power up the computers, the electronics, the things that make our day-to-day life easier and better, but weíre not producing it.
Fact. Outdated rules have made oil exploration nearly impossible, and no major power plants have been built for a decade. I am absolutely committed to a clean, safe, healthy environment, and I will take a back seat to no one when it comes to promoting common sense environmental protections. But we have gone much too far in our regulations and we have begun to hurt the people we should be helping.
Fact. Technology now exists that allows us to explore for oil with absolutely no impact on the surrounding environment. What was inconceivable 20 years ago is commonplace today. We can dig in areas so safely and cleanly that surrounding communities wonít even know thereís a well in their neighborhood.
Fact. Unless we change current energy policies and practices, the problem will actually .get worse. We will be paying more and more and getting less and less. We canít let the finger pointing distract us from what common sense tells us we need to do now.
But skyrocketing prices are not the only crises we face. American dependence on foreign oil threatens our national security. When more than half of our energy comes from foreign sources, particularly OPEC, that alone is a security risk. What happens if they decide to limit sales? We have barely 45 days worth of oil in our Strategic Petroleum Reserve. Imagine what would happen if that reserve runs out? Shouldnít we be better prepared?
This brings me to the issue of ANWR and the exploration for oil in Alaska. Environmental lobbyists claim that oil drilling in the ANWR will damage this beautiful, pristine land. Let me give you the facts.
Fact. Ninety-eight percent of the area is either designated as "wilderness" or classified as a "National Wildlife Refuge." Nothing will be touched in that 98 percent. In the remaining two percent, where the oil is, the Arctic winter lasts for nine months, and they donít see the sun at all for eight weeks. Thatís right Total darkness, 24-hours a day, for eight weeks. Windchills can reach minus 110 degrees. There are no majestic mountains or sweeping panoramas. It is nothing but ice and darkness.
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Should exploration and development ever take place in the coastal plain of ANWR, it would take place in the frozen winter. if there is no oil, the equipment would be dismantled and when the thaw comes, there would be one small cap to show that any disturbance ever took place. The tundra would remain untouched. Like ice fishing on a frozen river, the icehouse structure would not damage the water below.
Using modern drilling techniques -- such as 3-D seismic imaging to locate oil and directional drilling to recover the oil from one, central spot -- means that only a very small area will actually be impacted by development.
We should trust the experts, not the politicians. If the independent experts, who have spent their lives studying energy and environmental issues, conclude that oil exploration will not have any impact whatsoever on the surrounding environment, that should carry more weight than the politicians who would rather play politics than find a long-term solution.
And we should not only consider the potential benefit to our country, but to the Alaskan community as well After all, it should be up to the people who actually live in a particular community, the people who must breathe the air and drink the water, to decide whether or not to accept energy exploration in their communities.
Consider that more than 75 percent of Alaskans favor exploration and production in ANWR. Or that the Inupiat Eskimos who live in and near ANWR strongly support onshore oil development on the coastal plain. And why not? The development of the oil reserves from ANWR could create as many as 736,000 new domestic U.S. jobs.
I am committed to the dependable, affordable and environmentally clean production of energy for Americaís future. I am committed to an energy policy that enhances national security. I know we can do it. We have the best scientists, the best engineers and the best technicians in the world. We will put them to work to develop a 21st century energy program that leads America toward energy self-sufficiency and is the envy of all other nations.
So let me lay out an energy plan that uses tomorrowís technology today and truly plans for the future. The principles of an energy solution are simple:
Because of short-term thinking and inaction, we need a national energy plan that is both comprehensive and long-tern in outlook. There are no easy solutions or quick fixes.
Because we believe the priorities of more energy and a clean environment must co-exist, any plan must promote environmentally friendly, advanced technologies that increase energy supplies while also using energy more cleanly and efficiently.
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Because we believe the government should not dictate private behavior, any plan must respect the right of Americans to live the lifestyle of their choice and enhance both the individualís and communityís quality of life.
A problem that took a decade of neglect to develop will take a decade to solve. We must begin today, but in acting quickly, we must also act prudently. In rushing to put a band-aid on this problem of high prices, I am unwilling to neglect our environment or undermine our national security.
So let us agree that we do not need a political quick fix. We need a long-term, balanced common sense solution that will work not just tomorrow but next year and a decade from now.
So letís start working on this right now. The principles of energy reform are easy to put into action:
First, we all need to work harder to conserve energy starting today. Americans are the first to pitch in to help their neighbors as weíve seen so stunningly during the most recent tsunami. Even though our energy crisis is a man-made disaster, we should all show the same spirit now. When the temperatures heat up, ask yourself if you can do without air conditioning for an hour so that the elderly person down the street or your neighbor with the asthmatic child can use theirs. Besides, with prices where they are today, you will even save some money.
Second, we need to produce more home-grown oil and electricity right here in America, and we need to do it quickly. Our country grows the food that feeds the world. We write the software and manufacture the technology that fueled an information revolution across the globe. If we can do all this, surely we can produce our own oil and electricity.
And third, we donít have to weaken our environmental laws to get more plants built or oil drilled. There is a lot of unnecessary red tape in government that has nothing to do with environmental regulations. Letís streamline that process and get government out of the way of progress.
Weíve got a lot of work to do and a long road ahead. But thereís no reason for us to put this off to another day. Itís time for America to take its energy destiny back into its own hands. For too long we have outsourced our energy needs, effectively handing over our car keys and our wallets to unfriendly governments in the Middle East. Itís a simple choice really...and itís something we should have done long ago.
Americaís energy depends on Americaís ingenuity.
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NUCLEAR ENERGY: THE ENERGY SOURCE OF THE FUTURE...TODAY
Nuclear energy may be the largest source of emission-free electricity in the United States, it may be one of the most affordable sources, and it may be one of the most reliable. But the most important reason why Americans will support nuclear energy today is because "it will contribute to energy independence."
As with all energy policy, discussions of nuclear energy should be set in the context of a post-9/11 world. But there is a broader context as well. Nuclear energy goes beyond todayís short-term problems created by dependence on foreign oil and represents part of a long-term solution for tomorrow. The best argument for nuclear energy is built from the following communications ladder:
WHY NUCLEAR ENERGY
The context: Develop a comprehensive long-term solution for the future to make America more energy independent and energy efficient.
The action: Encourage diversity of energy sources, including emission-free sources of energy.
The reality: We cannot wait for the day when alternative sources of energy -- like solar and wind -- can meet our nationís energy demands. We need to focus on clean, reliable and sustainable sources that are available today.
A solution: Nuclear energy is a clean, reliable and sustainable source of energy that should be an important part of any comprehensive energy policy.
There are two important things to note.
1) Since diversity is critical to our energy policy, then no single source of energy represents the entire solution. Nuclear energy represents "an important part " of the solution but it is one component of a comprehensive energy policy. If you talk about it as the only solution, you will lose credibility with your audience.
2) You cannot talk about nuclear energy without discussing the safety and security of nuclear power and nuclear power plants. And you cannot credibly argue that nuclear plants are 100% safe and secure. Instead, you must talk about the fact that all energy sources have risks, and nuclear energy is no different. Highlight the industryís 25+ year track record of safety, the measures it has taken to secure its operations and, most importantly, the significant benefits of nuclear energy. In that context, Americanís will agree that, even if you cannot eliminate the risks of nuclear energy, it is a risk worth taking.
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The good news about nuclear energy is that most Americans (56%) already support its expanded use as a way to increase the nationís energy supply. And when educated about the issue, nearly two out of three Americans (65%) support nuclear energy while just 18% say they strongly oppose it.
More importantly, Americans are now ready to consider building the next generation of nuclear power plants. Sixty-one percent (61%) of Americans say they support building new nuclear plants near the sites of existing plants. And six in ten (60%) say they will support new plants at new locations.
Set in the proper context, and within appropriate limits, nuclear energy is not only an acceptable component of our energy strategy, it is one that Americans want promoted.
Here are the key areas to focus on.
1) Self-sufficiency begins with diversity and DIVERSITY BRINGS SECURITY. We have already discussed how Americans feel about dependence on foreign oil -- it is the foremost priority for our energy policy. And despite the differences between oil and nuclear energy and the needs they fulfill, increasing energy independence remains the number one reason to support expanded use of nuclear energy. It is more important than protecting the environment. It is more important than affordability. And it is more important than ensuring that supply meets demand.
If dependence on foreign oil is the problem, then energy diversity is the most important answer. By overwhelming majorities, Americans want Americaís energy policy to encourage new sources of energy and more options.
STATEMENTS THAT RESONATE
90% We need an energy policy that promotes diversity of energy sources -- including emissions-free sources like solar, wind and nuclear energy.
88% Our energy policy must include a broad mix of options -- from clean coal and natural gas to nuclear energy and hydro-electric power.
Diversity is compelling: fully 79% of Americans believe that "diversity of supply means security of supply." And as we already know, security of supply equates to American energy independence. If we focus on more sources of energy -- and more sources produced here at home -- then we will reduce the need for foreign oil.
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THE BEST DIVERSITY ARGUMENT
We donít want to be dependent upon foreign sources of oil and we donít want to be dependent on any ONE source of power either. We need to have a broad mix of options -- from clean coal and natural gas to nuclear power and solar energy.
More diversity of supply means more protection for consumers against price fluctuations and supply disruptions caused by natural disasters and other major events. More diversity of supply means more competition to provide the most efficient energy possible. More competition in supply will lead to more investment in advanced energy technologies whose goal is to provide more energy at a lower cost with less pollution.
And more diversity of supply also means more SECURITY of supply. Because diversity of energy sources is the only way to guarantee an uninterrupted supply of energy where and when we need it -- under any circumstance.
MORE WORDS THAT WORK
Weíre forcing ourselves to be either dependent on fossil fuels and. when we say that it almost means foreign fossil fuel -- or to go back to living in caves. We shouldnít do either. We should be considering every reasonable source of energy thatís out there, and when we talk about the era of non-traditional sources of energy, nuclear has to be in the equation.
2) Talk about the future. Americans are tired of an energy policy that looks like a patchwork quilt of half-measures and partial solutions. And they are tired of constantly hearing that there is an energy crisis in America. Though they may never be willing to give up their own SUV, they expect their elected representatives to stop focusing on short-term problems and start looking at long-term solutions. They want to hear their legislators talk about the future -- about a comprehensive plan that address Americaís needs today and tomorrow.
WORDS THAT WORK
Nuclear power should be a major source of fuel in the future because itís reliable, itís clean, itís affordable, and because the technology is there. We especially should be taking advantage of those kinds of clean resources that are available and can provide us with the necessary energy to move forward.
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WORDS THAT WORK
When we talk about energy in general, we have to talk about renewable fuels, because we are on the cusp of new technologies that are going to make renewable fuels much more affordable and environmentally friendly while ultimately creating all kinds of new jobs that we canít even imagine here in the United States.
We need an energy policy that allows us to continue to develop the energy sources that we have right now, but more importantly gives modest incentives for us to develop the technologies which will fuel this economy and the worldís economy for the next hundred years
3) Talk about the benefits of nuclear energy. Despite significant support for nuclear energy, most Americans know little about it. Even those who live closest to nuclear plants generally know little about the use of nuclear energy in America. They may be able to name the closest plant, but few have a clear sense of the benefits of nuclear energy. These are the same people who are most afraid of the risks -- real or perceived. A key part of every discussion about nuclear energy must be to educate Americans about the benefits.
There are four key benefits to nuclear energy that should be highlighted in every discussion:
* Nuclear energy is clean and efficient.
* Nuclear energy is affordable.
* Nuclear energy is reliable.
* And nuclear energy is made right here at home.
WORDS THAT WORK -- CLEAN AND EFFICIENT
Nuclear energy is among the cleanest and most efficient sources of energy available today. Together with solar, wind and hydra-electric energy, it is one of only a few emission-free sources of energy. It produces no greenhouse gases or other emissions that harm our air.
Whatís more, advances in nuclear power technology are helping nuclear power plants to become EVEN MORE efficient at producing electricity as time goes on. In fact, since 1990, efficiency improvements at the nationís nuclear power plants have created the same amount of power as 26 additional power plants without a single new plant.
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WORDS THAT WORK -- AFFORDABILITY
Producing electricity with nuclear power is extremely inexpensive compared to other sources of energy. In 2003, the average production cost for nuclear energy was less than two cents per kilowatt-hour, while it was five and a half cents for oil and closer to six cents for gas. Thatís double and triple the price of nuclear energy, respectively. Even coal-fired energy production, traditionally the cheapest source, is slightly more expensive than nuclear energy production. And, lower production costs mean lower prices for consumers.
WORDS THAT WORK -- RELIABILITY
We need fuels that are not at the mercy of events outside the country or the local weather. Consistent, sustainable and reliable sources of energy for our homes, for our businesses, and for our future. Because, when we flick the switch, we have a right to expect the light to go on.
Nuclear energy is one of the most reliable forms of energy available. And thatís why nuclear power plants are already a key source of energy across the country.
Nuclear energy is so reliable that some states already rely on it for MOST of their energy needs. For example, Vermont gets 76 percent of their electricity from nuclear energy and New Hampshire and South Carolina both depend on it for more than half of theirs.
WORDS THAT WORK -- INDEPENDENCE
Nuclear energy can help us achieve independence from foreign oil, because we donít have to depend on. Middle Eastern countries like Saudi Arabia, or organizations like OPEC, for the raw materials to generate nuclear power. With nuclear power, we can help to meet our energy needs for today, and for tomorrow, with energy created right here at home.
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MORE WORDS THAT WORK
We can put more electricity in the homes and in the businesses of America from a nuclear source than we ever can from an oil-producing source or from a water power-producing or from a gas-producing source or a coal-producing source. Itís cleaner than any of those, itís safer than any of those, and it will last longer than any of those. Itís critically important that we debate this issue and that we allow the construction of additional nuclear plants for the future of our children and our grandchildren.
4) Address the safety and security issue for nuclear energy head on. Virtually all of the opposition to nuclear energy is based on fears about the safety and security of nuclear power plants, transportation of solidified nuclear waste, and the storage and disposal of that waste.
This cannot be overstated. While fifty-three percent (53%) of Americans feel that nuclear power plants are either "completely safe and secure" or "very safe and secure", an overwhelming 87% of those people support the expanded use of nuclear energy. At the same time, more than half (56%) of those who do not think nuclear power plants are completely or very safe oppose expansion.
Setting the appropriate context for nuclear energy as described above is important to making the case. But addressing the safety and security issue head-on is the only way to truly drive increased support. You cannot ignore or attempt to dismiss these fears if you want to generate increased support for nuclear energy. You must acknowledge that there are risks and educate the public about the steps the government and the industry have taken to address those risks.
Here is how to approach the issue:
TALKING ABOUT NUCLEAR ENERGY SAFETY AND SECURITY
Now, many people may agree that nuclear energy is efficient and affordable, but they woreí about the risks of nuclear energy. The fact is, like every other source of energy, nuclear energy does have risks. And there is no way to ensure that there will never be an accident or a terrorist attack. But you can prepare for them. And you can build safeguards to help protect against them...or to contain them if they were to happen.
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NUCLEAR ENERGY: SAFETY & SECURITY
That is why the industry and the federal government have created strict regulations to ensure the safety and security of our nuclear plants. Many of these safeguards existed before September 11th Many more have been added since.
These steps and others help explain why there has never been an event at a nuclear power plant in the United States that has affected the health of Americans. Not even Three Mile Island in 1979.
We will never be able to eliminate all of the risks of nuclear power. But when you think about the record of safety for the industry over the past 25 years and the benefits of nuclear power, it is a risk worth taking.
5) Give specific examples of the safety and security measures in place. This is critical. It is one thing to say that steps are being taken and quite another to explain exactly what those steps are. Opponents of nuclear power will cite their own examples of safety and security problems, so you must be armed with data that supports your argument. Here are the three best examples of nuclear industry safety and security.
THREE EXAMPLES OF WHY PLANTS ARE SAFE AND SECURE
First, strict government regulations require that redundant monitoring and failsafe measures are installed to automatically shut down a reactor if anything out of the ordinary is detected.
Second, according to a study by E.P.R.L, an independent, highly respected, Palo Alto, California research institute, the containment structures required of nuclear power plants are strong enough to protect the public even if a nuclear plant was hit by a Boeing 767 at the maximum plausible speed and at the most vulnerable spot.
And third, for every one ton of solidified nuclear waste that is transported from a nuclear plant, there are four tons of protective shielding made from multiple layers of steel, lead and other materials surrounding the fuel so the containers could withstand even a severe accident.
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-- Talk about the secure -- not solid, strong or robust -- nuclear facility building structure;
-- Mention the strict regulations -- not protocols or rules -- governing nuclear power plants; and
-- Emphasize safe and secure energy when addressing Americaís need for energy independence.
6) We canít afford to wait for wind and solar. Nuclear energy is not considered the cleanest energy source available -- solar and wind are. Nor is it considered the most reliable or affordable -- hydro-electric is. But what nuclear has that these power sources lack is the ability to help us meet the energy problems of today in the future. Everyone likely believes that someday, we will be able to cheaply power our homes and businesses with any one of these other alternative sources. But we cannot do it today. You must highlight this fact. It makes nuclear stand out as the only emission-free, efficient, affordable and reliable source of energy that is available TODAY.
Americans overwhelmingly understand this. In fact 89% of Americans agree with the following statement:
WORDS THAT WORK
We cannot keep our fingers crossed and wait for the day when solar and wind power are able to meet our nationís energy demands. We need to focus on clean, reliable and sustainable sources of energy that can help us right now - today.
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