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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Solar energy focus of talk

    Solar energy focus of talk

    While students may have been scarce at U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ presentation for Focus the Nation, global warming issues were not.

    Giffords’ discussion was largely focused on the prospects and hopes of solar energy.

    She cited the importance of developing solar energy technologies as having three outcomes: a reduction in foreign fuel dependency, an increase in international and economic competitiveness and fighting global warming.

    “”Being able to grow our own energy makes a lot of sense,”” Giffords said.

    For a state that has a considerable amount of sunlight, Arizona is an obvious candidate for the focus of the development of solar energy technologies.

    Since her election to office one year ago, Giffords has introduced and supported legislature advocating and promoting solar energy solutions and various initiatives to encourage the use of renewable and environment-friendly alternatives. Giffords hopes to use her time in office to move this state and this country forward in terms of renewable energy resource development.

    Giffords cites students as a group with great potential in stabilizing our earth.

    “”Students are still at a time in their life where they are making important decisions … I think [students] are at a point where they are open to ideas, and they’re generally more concerned about the future because they have more of the future ahead of them.””

    Giffords’ discussion was focused on solar energy possibilities for the state and country, but many other speakers for Focus the Nation today covered other alternatives for sustainability.

    These discussions ranged from water solutions to global warming by Jim Riley, Associate Professor of the Department of Soil, Water and Environmental Science to Defenders of Wildlife and certified “”Inconvenient Truth”” speaker, M. Scott Johnson.

    “”We are all humans, and we share the earth together. If we work together to support the earth, we work together to support each other,”” Johnson said.

    Giffords credits some of the increasing interest in global warming to the highly publicized talks of former Vice President, Al Gore.

    “”Here’s a guy with zero personality. Not only does he become this big movie star, but he’s able to be funny,”” Giffords said. “”People weren’t talking about climate change really until he stepped forward to do this, and we need to applaud him and recognize him for that.””

    Gifford’s said everyone should find their “”one thing”” that can help the environment they live in.

    This “”one thing”” could be anything from biking to school or work to installing solar panels on their houses, she said.

    “”If we all do a piece of it, [sustainability] is going to become much more achievable,”” Giffords said.

    She said a few ways she contributes to the environment is by walking to her office in D.C. and using tote bags instead of plastic bags to carry groceries to her car.

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