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Driving Down the Path to Energy Security

May 10, 2012 2 minute Read by Michael McMahan

Transportation, transportation, transportation. That was the theme of the distinguished panel discussion that I was fortunate to moderate yesterday on the campus of Southern Methodist University. The panel was highlighted by remarks from Herb Kelleher — founder and chairman emeritus of Southwest Airlines — and the release of a new report on domestic energy security.

The consensus of the panel discussion was that when it comes to energy security, the real answers and opportunities lie in the transportation sector. The trucking industry, in particular, is the place to start. In this country we now have the capability to both produce much more natural gas domestically and to reduce oil consumption significantly by making use of natural gas reserves in the trucking sector. The technology for engine conversion currently exists, and natural gas is available in an abundant supply.

General James Conway advocated transportation as an answer because he believes we need to increase the amount of energy we produce while simultaneously reducing the amount we consume. He is exactly right; that’s the only way to become truly energy independent.

We will visit other parts of the panel discussion in the coming days, but the clear take-away from this meeting of minds was that addressing the transportation sector could be a true turning point in the quest for domestic energy security.


Author

Michael McMahan
Michael McMahan

Michael McMahan currently serves as Vice President of Corporate Planning and Development, overseeing all fundraising activities and events as well as integration of long-term revenue planning for Bush Institute and public programming work.

Previously, he worked as Vice President, Strategy and Planning. In this capacity he coordinated strategic planning and strategic partnerships across the Bush Center.  He also worked as Director, Institute Policy and Planning and as Program Manager for the Bush Institute’s economic growth initiative.

McMahan is a licensed member of the Texas Bar, and prior to joining the Bush Center he was an energy law litigator. He served in the George W. Bush Administration at the U.S. Department of Energy in the Office of Policy and International Affairs. He is a graduate of the University of Texas (B.A., Economics) and Southern Methodist University’s Dedman School of Law (J.D.).

McMahan serves on the board of the Dallas Urban Debate Alliance and is a founding board member of the Dallas chapter of America’s Future Foundation.

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