A 'Credible' Afghanistan?; The Cost of Renewable Energy
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Hamid Karzai has been declared re-elected as President of Afghanistan. Now that Abdullah Abdullah has dropped out, there won't be a run-off. The UN Secretary General is among those telling Karzai to find another way to demonstrate "credibility" to his own people and the rest of the world. What will this mean for sending more American troops? Also, billions of federal dollars are going to "clean energy" projects. Are they as "clean" as they're made out to be? How much will the "hidden costs" of renewable fuels counteract their benefit to the environment?
Banner image: Afghan police and Afghan National Army Air Corps help to carry election material from a helicopter today in Takhar, Afghanistan. Photo: Paula Bronstein /Getty Images)
Hamid Karzai Declared Afghan President Again ()
With Abdullah Abdullah out of the run-off election, Hamid Karzai has been declared re-elected as President of Afghanistan. In Kabul, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has offered congratulations, at the same time saying it's now up to Karzai to demonstrate his government's credibility to the international community and to his own people. How will the results influence the Obama Administration, which has been waiting to establish a "credible partner" in Afghanistan, before deciding whether to send more troops?
- Matthew Green: Afghanistan and Pakistan Correspondent, Financial Times
- Gordon Lubold: Pentagon Correspondent, Christian Science Monitor
- Reuel Marc Gerecht: Senior Fellow, Foundation for Defense of Democracies, @followFDD
- Scott Ritter: former Chief Weapons Inspector; UN Special Commission in Iraq
The Cost of Renewable Energy ()
Last week, President Obama doled out $3.4 billion in federal grants for renewable energy projects including "smart meters," designed to allow consumers to track the electricity they use and, hopefully, change their habits. They're said to be the first step to what's called a "smart grid." Twenty million dollars went to Burbank Water and Power, the publicly owned utility in a suburb of Los Angeles. Florida Power and Light also received "smart meter" grants, as well as $200 million for a solar photovoltaic plant, much praised by President Obama. That private company has a subsidiary named NextEra, which is developing solar energy "farms" in Southern California.
- Fred Fletcher: Assistant General Manager, Burbank Water and Power
- Todd Woody: environmental journalist
- Rhonda Mills: Spokeswoman, Solar Millennium
- Marlo Lewis: Senior Fellow, Competitive Enterprise Institute, @ceidotorg
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