"Half a century ago, John Kennedy challenged the country to put a man on the Moon within ten years. As a result, energy and money was infused into public schools. Research was initiated at universities, and wonderful economic ripple effects went through society. I think, today, our need to wean ourselves of foreign oil is far greater than our need was 40 years ago to put a man on the Moon. If we had an Apollo-like initiative to promote research into alternative energy sources, to implement energy resources that are out there and promote energy conservation in our homes, we would create a lot of jobs here in the 24th District.
We've got some big advantages here. Wind generation of electricity has already proven itself to be cost effective here, locally. Because of our dramatic temperature changes between the seasons, geothermal and hydrothermal have a lot of potential here. Also, we have five times more universities in the 24th District than is the norm in this country. We're exceedingly endowed with universities, and if research activities and activities for young people who have just finished their degrees existed, we would benefit disproportionately. On some visceral level, all of us understand the lack of a coherent energy policy we have right now, every time we fill up our cars with gas or pay our monthly heating bills."
This proposal is a smart combination of local issues and national priorities. In spite of the weirdly warm winter we're having, we all are having to cope with the economic impact of dramatically increased costs for heating our homes and businesses. Winter energy costs are a dramatic threat to the economic integrity of the 24th District. Yet, we also have a disproportionate number of colleges and universities in our district, and can benefit from investment in scientific research programs.
Sherwood Boehlert has grown increasingly weak as an advocate for science spending over the last few years, and Roberts, as a scientist, is hitting Boehlert hard in the one place where Boehlert appeals to some Democrats.
For more information about his campaign for Congress, visit the Les Roberts web site.