In response to the Opinion article imploring Congress to lift the ban on offshore drilling, we must realize that gridlock will continue to stall an effective national energy policy until we send representatives to Congress who can cooperate across the aisle to get things done.
We have to elect people who not only can work with the opposition party, but who are fully dedicated to reducing our dependence upon foreign oil by environmentally responsible drilling while concurrently developing alternative-renewable energy sources and greater energy efficiency.
I believe that for Alaska, that person is Mark Begich. He has made energy efficiency a cornerstone of his administration as mayor of our largest city, meanwhile working to reduce energy costs for average Alaskans and pledging to reduce Anchorage's greenhouse emission as a signatory to the U.S. Mayors Climate Agreement. He has made Anchorage a world leader in the fight against global warming by establishing an international task force to focus on best practices for northern cities to reduce their emissions.
Even as he pledges to work toward environmentally responsible drilling in ANWR, Mark Begich actively and strongly supports the development of Alaska's rich potential for renewable energy sources such as wind, geothermal, tidal and hydropower. His record in Anchorage demonstrates his dedication to bringing Alaska into a self-sustaining energy future. If we send him to Congress, he can work cooperatively, without pettiness and grandstanding, toward that goal for Alaska and our entire country.
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