John Hagelin Outlines Plan to Make U.S. Energy Self-Sufficient during Speech at the University of Southern California

Says Clinton’s Release of Strategic Reserves Is “Shortsighted and Politically Driven”

(Los Angeles, CA) Calling Bill Clinton’s decision to draw upon U.S. oil reserves “shortsighted and politically driven,” John Hagelin announced today his own comprehensive plan to make the United States energy self-sufficient within five years.

Hagelin, a Harvard-trained nuclear physicist and the Natural Law Party/Independent Coalition Party presidential candidate, presented his plan during a speech to 400 students at the Institute of Politics at the University of Southern California.

Hagelin called for a “bold national commitment” to energy conservation as well as the development of new energy sources, such as wind, solar, and biomass—“which could be cost-competitive now, if government stopped subsidizing fossil fuels.”

“After fostering our addiction to fossil fuels and foreign oil through subsidies and tax breaks for the oil industry, Clinton and Al Gore are now seeking to rescue voters from the high costs of heating oil and gasoline caused by that addiction,” Hagelin told the students.

“Energy conservation and development of renewable energy resources initiated during the Carter Administration have been ignored by subsequent administrations, and we continue to pay the price. Had the Reagan, Bush and Clinton/Gore administrations continued the progress, we could be energy self-sufficient today.”

Hagelin said that Clinton’s decision was politically motivated. “His proposed release of 30 million barrels from our strategic oil reserve is at best tokenism—the equivalent of less than two days of domestic oil consumption,” said Hagelin. “The issue of our energy dependence on foreign oil is far too important to play politics with.”

Hagelin said the crisis highlights the need for prevention-oriented, forward looking government—as opposed to the crisis management that has gripped Republican and Democratic administrations for years.

“Both Republicans and Democrats are guilty of hypocrisy. The Republicans have long called for exploiting our strategic reserves so that their oil baron friends could get their hands on cheap oil. Now that the Democrats are calling for it, the Republicans are crying foul. Also, Clinton, who has previously opposed use of our strategic reserves, now suddenly wants to release them 46 days prior to a national election.

“We have enough domestic oil production to become energy self sufficient, when coupled with fuel-efficient vehicles, home insulation and other widely available conservation technologies, and with development of our abundant, clean renewable energy resources, such as wind, solar, biomass and geothermal.”

“These alternative energy sources are cost-competitive now, especially when compared with the true cost of fossil fuels—including the health costs of air-born pollutants, the environmental costs of acid rain, and the military costs of fighting foreign wars on behalf of our oil companies. Our government has been subsidizing fossil fuel consumption with American’s income taxes, when they should have been promoting energy self-sufficiency.”

Highlights of John Hagelin’s Plan