Throughout history, wars have been fought over non-renewable natural resources. In a world focused on using renewable energy, these conflicts could be avoided and greater stability achieved. But we need to convince consumers to adopt renewable energy. To do so, we need to make renewables cost effective and improve their performance.

The U.S. was once the leader in solar technologies, but last year, only 11 percent of the photovoltaic generating capacity was manufactured here; and we have fallen behind our global competitors, such as Germany and Japan, which saw solar installation increase as a result of significant incentive programs.

But all is not lost, because nature gives us an advantage - the United States has far greater potential for solar power than many of our international rivals. We have tremendous growth potential, in the development renewable energy technologies such as solar, biofuels, and wind. We must leverage this potential today to eliminate our dependence on foreign energy sources, maintain our global competitiveness and for the sake of our environment.