PRESS RELEASE — FOR IMMEDIATE USE, February 1, 2006 BOB WALDROP CHALLENGES OPPONENTS IN OKC MAYORAL RACE TO “JUST SAY YES” TO THE PRESIDENTS CALL TO BREAK OUR DEPENDENCY UPON MIDDLE EASTERN OIL!
For more information, contact Bob Waldrop, 405-613-4688,
Mayoral candidate Bob Waldrop today challenged his opponents in the race for Mayor of Oklahoma City to say :”JUST SAY YES” to the President’s call for eliminating America’s dependency on Middle Eastern oil.
Waldrop says, “If we are going to get serious about breaking free of Middle Eastern oil, then we have to get serious about a multi-modal public transportation system that integrates buses, commuter rail, and automobiles into an effective transportation system that can get people to work and shoppers to stores irrespective of the price of gasoline or the good will of Jihadist terrorists..We are sending our sons and daughters to war to fight, while we at home are sending aid and comfort to those who are trying to kill our soldiers every time we fill our tanks with gasoline and diesel. The City needs to do a better job of providing public transportation services, and the public needs to do a better job of using public transit. Twiddling our thumbs and waiting for the Energy Fairy to come and save us isn’t an option.”
Waldrop notes that biofuels like ethanol and biodiesel cannot substitute for gasoline and diesel. “We simply don’t have enough crop land. If every single acre of arable land in the United States was planted to soy beans, we would only have enough biodiesel to replace about 12% of our present usage. Ethanol isn’t much better, since scientific studies consistently show that it takes more energy to make ethanol than you get out of it in usable energy. Hydrogen is not a fuel, it is like electricity, it is an energy carrier. It takes more BTUs to make it than we get out of it in useful work. If there are advanced energy technologies out there, they are decades away from practical reality, but smart investments in public multi-modal transportation can make a near term difference.”
Some say commuter rail would be impossibly expensive, but Bob Waldrop notes that the major elements of a commuter rail system are already in place, bought and paid for by our grandparents’ generation, centered on the rail interchange at Union Station south of downtown. Unfortunately, this potential for a cost effective commuter rail system is in danger of destruction, due to the short-sighted decision of ODOT to route the new I-40 Crosstown Freeway in such a way that the majority of the rail links at Union Station will be severed. A functional Union Station would provide a southern anchor for downtown, and would irresistibly attract development into an area which presently is mostly empty weedy lots strewn with trash. Waldrop says, “It is astonishing that the City has agreed to this foolish plan. If I am elected, I will urge the City to bring a lawsuit against the State to force a change in the route so that Union Station’s rail yard can be preserved.”
Waldrop says, “The president has previously called upon all Americans to conserve energy, and in response Oklahoma City government is acting like that has nothing to do with us! But in fact Oklahoma City has an important role to play in breaking America free from its dependency upon foreign oil, and it is past time for the leadership of Oklahoma City to step up and do their duty, just as their grandparents did on the home front during World War II.”
FACT: Oklahomans consume 16.2% more BTUs per capita and pay 8.3% more per capita for our energy than the national average. Source: 2005 Statistical Abstract of the United States