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Energy Secretary Moniz's Remarks at University of Texas at Austin -- As Prepared for Delivery

February 5, 2014 - 4:00pm

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Tomorrow, Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz will travel to Austin, Texas, to amplify President Obama’s State of the Union remarks on energy and technology innovation. Secretary Moniz will focus on the President’s all-of-the-above energy strategy, the need for increased workforce training and the importance of science and innovation to the American economy.

Below are excerpts of the Secretary’s remarks as prepared for delivery:

“To be clear, the President’s all-of-the-above approach isn’t a slogan; it’s a policy that is paying dividends for our economy and our environment. Thanks to smart government policies and critical private sector investments, we have seen impressive breakthroughs in domestic energy production. For the first time in nearly two decades, the United States now produces more of our own oil here at home than we buy from other countries. And today, the United States is the number one natural gas producer in the world. In the last five years, we have also seen remarkable increases in clean and renewable energy - doubling the amount of energy that we produce from solar and wind.”

“In many ways, Texas is the perfect example of how President Obama’s all-of-the-above energy strategy can go hand in hand with combating climate change.  This state is the number one producer of oil and gas in the country. Texas has also been a national leader in clean and renewable energy production. This state already leads the nation in electricity generation from non-hydroelectric renewable resources. And Texas has the highest wind-powered generation capacity of any state in the nation.”

“I am very pleased to announce that today the Department of Energy is awarding $30 million to 12 projects across the United States through ARPA-E’s Full-Spectrum Optimized Conversion and Utilization of Sunlight or ‘FOCUS’ program. FOCUS is working to develop new hybrid solar energy converters and hybrid energy storage systems that can deliver low-cost, high-efficiency solar energy. This means that solar energy will be readily available in homes across America—even when the sun isn’t shining.”

“This is an exciting time for the solar industry.  Just last week, an industry report found that utility-scale solar set a record with 2.3 gigawatts installed in 2013. The Energy Department has helped support some of the largest and most innovative solar power projects in the United States. The DOE’s Loan Program helped to finance the first five utility-scale photovoltaic plants larger than 100MW in the United States. These projects helped prove to private industry that the technology was viable and cost effective - the subsequent 10 utility scale PV projects were privately financed without the Department’s support.”

“UT Austin has grown into a research and teaching powerhouse, both educating the next generation of scientists and engineers and helping to drive cutting edge research and innovation.  The Department of Energy is proud to partner with the University on millions of dollars of research annually.”

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