Last updated on: 7/29/2009 | Author: ProCon.org

Jimmy Carter Biography

Title:
39th President of the United States
Position:
Not Clearly Pro or Con to the question "Can Alternative Energy Effectively Replace Fossil Fuels?"
Reasoning:

“The U.S. now uses 2½ times more oil than China and 7½ times more than India or, on a per capita consumption basis, 12 times China’s and 28 times India’s.

Although our rich nation can afford these daily purchases, there is little doubt that, in general terms, we are constrained not to alienate our major oil suppliers…

Excessive oil purchases are the solid foundation of our net trade deficit, which creates a disturbing dependence on foreign nations that finance our debt. We still face criticism from some of our allies who are far ahead of us in energy efficiency and commitments to environmental quality, and we must also remember that the poorest people also pay the higher oil prices that result from our enormous per capita consumption…

We also lag far behind many other nations in the production and use of windmills, solar power, nuclear energy, and the efficiency of energy consumption…

In closing, let me emphasize that our inseparable energy and environmental decisions will determine how well we can maintain a vibrant society, protect our strategic interests, regain worldwide political and economic leadership, meet relatively new competitive challenges, and deal with less fortunate nations. Collectively, nothing could be more important.”

“Former US President Jimmy Carter Addresses Energy Security Before US Senate Foreign Relations Committee Hearing,” www.cartercenter.org, May 12, 2009

[Editors Note: For comparison we have included an Apr. 18, 1977 statement – also Not Clearly Pro or Con – from President Carter below.]

“Because we are now running out of gas and oil [1977], we must prepare quickly for a… change to strict conservation and to the use of coal and permanent renewable energy sources, like solar power.”

“The Presidents Energy Policy,” www.pbs.org, Apr. 18, 1977

Theoretical Expertise Ranking:
    Experts
Individuals with PhDs, or equivalent advanced degrees in fields relevant to alternative energy or fossil fuel issues. Also top-level government officials (such as foreign leaders, US presidents, Founding Fathers, Supreme Court Justices, members of legislative bodies, cabinet members, military leaders, etc.) with positions relevant to alternative energy or fossil fuel issues.
Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Founder and Trustee, Carter Center, 1982-present
  • University Distinguished Professor, Emory University, 1982-present
  • Deacon, Maranatha Baptist Church, Plains (GA)
  • Board Member, Habitat for Humanity
  • Recipient, Nobel Peace Prize, 2002
  • 39th President of the United States, Jan. 20, 1977-1981
  • 76th Governor of Georgia, Jan. 12, 1971-1976
  • Former Chairman: Southern Regional Education Board, Appalachian Regional Commission, Coastal Plains Regional Action Planning Commission, and Southern Growth Policies Board
  • Democratic National Campaign Chairman, 1974
  • Georgia State Senator, 1962-1970
  • Former Operator, Carter’s Warehouse (general-purpose seed and farm supply company) in Plains, GA
Education:
  • BS, Physics, United States Naval Academy, 1946
  • Attended Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Attended Georgia Southwestern College
Other:
  • Volunteers one week a year for Habitat for Humanity
  • Served in the United States Navy, 1946-1953
  • Legal name is James Earl Carter, Jr.
  • Born Oct. 1, 1924 in Plains, GA