Thank you, Jeff, for the introduction. Jeff has recently returned to Japan as the Department of Energy’s attaché here. He continues the long tradition of excellent energy officers that have helped to support Japan across a broad range of energy issues.
I also want to thank our hosts here at the Tokyo American Center for graciously providing me with the opportunity to speak with you this evening. And thank you to our many Japanese friends here tonight, for the warm welcome and bright hospitality. It is great to be back in Japan.
Thank you, Sam, for the introduction. And thank you to the Council on Competitiveness for giving me the opportunity to speak here today.
Congratulations on your 25th anniversary. For a quarter of a century, you have fostered dialogue and promoted ideas that have helped keep America competitive in the global economy. I applaud your focus on strengthening U.S. manufacturing and I appreciate the collaborative effort your members have undertaken to produce the report that the Council is releasing today. To say that its publication is timely would be an understatement.
Thank you for the opportunity to join you today. Everyone in this room shares a commitment to ensuring the reliability of our nation’s electric grid. Together, we are committed to ensuring the safe and secure delivery of electricity to consumers. And, together, we share a commitment to doing this in a way that is economically viable, affordable, protects public health, and is environmentally sound.
Thank you, Steve, for the introduction and for your work as one of America’s energy leaders. In addition to his work at Texas A&M, Steve Holditch recently served as a member of a group of experts convened by Secretary Chu to offer recommendations on how to improve the safety and environmental performance of shale gas drilling.
I am honored to be here today with my distinguished colleagues Cao Jianlin, China’s Vice Minister of Science and Technology, and Zhu Weilin with the China National Offshore Oil Corporation.
We can do more to create a culture that values diversity, which in turn will make the Department an employer of choice and enhance our mission effectiveness. I believe that we are at our best when we draw on the talents of all parts of our society, and our mission accomplishments are achieved when diverse perspectives are brought to bear to overcome our greatest challenges.