T. Boone Pickens, the man with the most Southern Boy/Midwestern Pioneer name imaginable, is going to save us from ourselves.

Today he unveiled the ‘Pickens Plan’ which outlines how our country can reduce dependence on foreign oil and move toward the power of the wind. Just as Sunny Delight unleashes the power of the sun, Mr. Pickens plans to unleash the power of the wind. Kind of like a Captain Planet type of thing, I suppose.

Pickens is a well known Texas oilman, so he’s got his finger on the pulse of the world’s energy needs. The reason he’s going after the problem now is because he believes it’s the main factor for what’s killing the economy.

The Boone-inator, as I’m sure he prefers to be called, is a big fan of harnessing our country’s Wind Corridor, which stretches from the Canadian border downward into West Texas. An interesting coincidence is that this proposed ‘wind corridor’ resides right in an area of the country that Pickens practically owns. Pickens is originally from Oklahoma and is a major donor to Oklahoma State University, which they should probably rename Windfarmington College. (Or maybe just rename the machines Wind Tur-boones?)

Turbines built in this area of the country could possibly supply 20% of the country’s energy needs. Pickens also believes that there should be a colossal shift toward using natural gas to fuel our engines. He claims it would save the country $230 billion a year by replacing over 1/3 country’s imported oil.

This seems like a great idea and I’m all for wind farms. However, one word of caution is coming from across the pond. As Britain pushes a major deal to build 7,000 new wind turbines throughout their country on both the land and sea, news about the downside is also spreading. During cold months, wind-turbines tend to shut down to nearly 4% of their maximum output capacity. Meaning: many cities could be in for some cold nights if they rely on wind farms exclusively. Looks like we better keep some of those coal mines and gas stations open for a while.

But this shouldn’t really dissuade anyone from pursuing wind power as the future of energy. As Pickens would probably point out, the climate in the northern borders of England is much different than the dry windy plains of Oklahoma.

One of the big things going for the Pickens plan is that it’s somewhat non-partisan. Pickens himself isn’t a politician proposing a piece of legislation, but rather a businessman with experience and contacts directly within the industry. THE BOONE is also not coming out in support of either presidential candidate, and has pledged to help implement this plan for whichever man is elected.

So do you support the Pickens plan? Do they think it has a chance of solving our energy problems? Let us know in the comments.

CNN: The Pickens Plan, July 8, 2008

Daily Mail: Why wind turbines could cause mid-winter blackouts, July 7, 2008