Town hall meeting showcases Pickens' plan

Wednesday, August 13th 2008, 4:01 pm
By: News 9

By Gan Matthews, NEWS 9

MCALESTER, Okla. -- On Wednesday, Boone Pickens spoke to 800 people in McAlester about his new energy plan.

Pickens has presented at town hall meetings around the country in efforts to gain support for wind power.

"The plan is to get off of foriegn oil," Pickens said. "Our security's at risk."

Pickens' solution for the country is based on transitioning to wind power, eventually supplying the U.S. with 20 percent of the demanded electricity over the next decade. Pickens believes when the transition is accomplished, more natural gas will be available for use in automobiles.

Pickens gained support from both private persons and public officials in McAlester.

"I think it's a great plan. I think it'll work and I think Oklahoma will definitely be behind him," said Eufaula resident Conie Morris.

Oklahoma Corporation Commissioner Jim Roth also believes in Pickens' plan.

"We have the most consistant, reliable wind of any state in our country so the western part of our state in particular is going go enjoy the benefits of what he's pushing," Roth said.

An estimated 250,000 people have already shown their support of Pickens' plan by signing up to pressure state legislatures by asking them a series of questions about energy use.

"That's going to get up to a million. We'll have a million in there in next two months," Pickens said.

Pickens said presidential candidates McCain and Obama need more education on the U.S.' energy needs.

Pickens, who is 80-years-old, said he's too old to run himself, but if he were in his 60s, he would run and beat them both.

Pickens grew up in Holdenville, Oklahoma, attended Oklahoma A&M and made a fortune in the oil business.