The need for an environmentally sound and fiscally responsible energy plan for New Hampshire, the region, and the nation will be the topic of an upcoming educational forum. The event will take place on Wednesday, July 14th at 7 pm at the Peterborough Unitarian Universalist Church, located at 25 Main Street in Peterborough, NH.Peterborough, New Hampshire – July 12, 2004 [SolarAccess.com] The need for an environmentally sound and fiscally responsible energy plan for New Hampshire, the region, and the nation will be the topic of an upcoming educational forum. The event will take place on Wednesday, July 14th at 7 pm at the Peterborough Unitarian Universalist Church, located at 25 Main Street in Peterborough, NH. “New Hampshire and the nation need a policy that fosters clean, high-tech, home-grown energy sources. The result will be more jobs and better jobs, cleaner air, improved public health, lower total energy costs and greater national security,” says Jim Rubens. Rubens supports establishing legislation that commits all commercial electric energy suppliers to obtain a given percentage of their energy from clean, renewable sources. Rubens, who as part of the program will address renewable energy and other issues, was a NH state senator from 1994-1998, and GOP candidate for governor in 1998. He is a Union of Concerned Scientists consultant on various national energy issues, and co-host of the WNDS-TV-50 political and business talk show, Common Cents. He was the lead opponent of the New Hampshire electric utility restructuring law. The program will also feature a presentation about the benefits of energy efficiency as a way of meeting energy needs. “It is well known in the business community, as well as among municipalities, schools and elsewhere, that energy efficiency saves money,” said Peter Alexander, executive director of New England Coalition, which has been instrumental in focusing public awareness on issues associated with the proposed 20% power boost at Entergy Nuclear’s Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Station. “What is becoming more appreciated is that energy-efficiency can also be a driver for job creation and economic development.” Alexander worked closely with the Vermont and New Hampshire Legislatures to get resolutions passed calling for an Independent Safety Assessment (ISA) of the 32-year old reactor. Before going to work with the Coalition in 2003, Alexander was executive director of the Center for Energy Efficiency, where he designed and ran energy efficiency programs for the State Energy Office of New Mexico and the US Department of Energy. Ongoing deliberations in Washington DC about an acceptable energy policy make the forum especially well-timed. Contentious points have included large subsidies for fossil fuel and nuclear power industries. Each year, more federal money is put into research and development (R & D) of fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and gas, than into energy-efficiency and conservation programs, says John Friede, Executive Director of Worldview, Ltd. and Vice-Chair of the NH UU Social Responsibility Department who will moderate a discussion following the presentations. The educational forum is sponsored by the congregation’s Social Justice Committee, the New Hampshire Unitarian Universalist Social Responsibility Department, and Worldview, Ltd. The program is free and open to the public.