Former U.S. Sen. Timothy Wirth to Discuss Need for New Energy Policy

Timothy Wirth, president of the United Nations Foundation and former United States Senator from Colorado, will discuss “Oil Dependence, Foreign Policy and the Need for a New Energy Policy” on Thursday, October 23, at 4 p.m. in the Yale Law School Auditorium.

The lecture is sponsored by the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, and is free and open to the public.

“Senator Wirth’s Energy Future Coalition is the best hope we have today for a sensible energy strategy for the United States,” said James Gustave Speth, dean of the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. “He is coming to Yale just as the energy issue is moving to center stage in Congress.”

Wirth recently led a bipartisan group, the Energy Future Coalition, in producing an energy blueprint for the United States. His article, “The Future of Energy Policy,” published last summer in Foreign Affairs magazine, is based on the work of the coalition. He proposes three long-term goals that should guide America’s energy policies: cut U.S. oil consumption by a third, cut U.S. carbon emissions by a third to stimulate a two-thirds global reduction by the end of the century, and develop clean energy technologies and trade policies that would increase access of the world’s poor to modern energy services and agricultural markets.

“Such moves will improve the lives of billions of people, stimulate economic growth and create new markets for American goods and services,” Wirth said.

As president of the United Nations Foundation since its inception in 1998, Wirth has focused the foundation’s priorities on the environment and climate change, women and population, children’s health and peace, security and human rights.

Prior to joining the foundation, Wirth was undersecretary of state for global affairs (1993-1997), responsible for coordinating U.S. foreign policy in the areas of refugees, population, environment, science, human rights, narcotics and crime. He represented Colorado in the U.S. Senate (1987-1993) and the state’s second congressional district in the House of Representatives (1975-1987). In the Senate, he focused on environmental issues, especially global climate change and population stabilization, and in the House, he focused on communications technology and budget policy.

A fourth generation Colorado native, Wirth was White House Fellow under President Lyndon Johnson, and served as deputy assistant secretary for education in the Nixon Administration. He is a graduate of Harvard College and holds a Ph.D. from Stanford. The recipient of numerous awards and honorary degrees, Wirth also served as a member of the Harvard Board of Overseers.

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Dave DeFusco: david.defusco@yale.edu, 203-436-4842