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Obama's new Energy Secretary and EPA head

The US has been abuzz with talk of Obama's picks for his cabinet. One very exciting guy coming up for Secretary of Energy will be Steven Chu, a strong advocate for alternative and renewable energy. He also happens to be a Nobel Laureate for Physics from 1997 (cooling and trapping atoms with lasers). Currently this guy serves as director for the Lawerence Berkeley National Laboratory, pushing the governmental institution towards becoming a world leader in biofuels, artificial photosynthesis, and solar energy technologies, focusing on using carbon-neutral sources.

One particular quote stands out to me: "If I were emperor of the world, I would put the pedal to the floor on energy efficiency and conservation for the next decade," he told Reuters in a May 2007 interview. This really excites me because I think he will be able to push the US towards the forefront of the climate change issue. Personally, I'm also proud that a Chinese-American will be spearheading the effort. It may send a message to China, as well, to push them to change their policies towards reducing greenhouse emissions.

Further quotes from Steven Chu about climate change can be found here.

Another important cabinet pick will be Obama's choice for the administrator for the EPA. Lots of names have been thrown around, but it sounds like he's recently settled for Lisa P. Jackson. Her record as former head of the New Jersey EPA seems fairly green, although critics have argued that her record shows neglect of hazardous waste sites and weakening proposals to enact safer groundwater quality standards.

We'll have to see how these appointments turn out, but so far, I'm fairly excited to see the people that Obama has put his trust in. Let's hope that trust is well placed.

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