T. Boone Pickens - His Life. His Legacy. T. Boone Pickens - His Life. His Legacy.
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We understand fully that people have to raise cattle or whatever elase they need to do. But I really do discourage anybody ever breaking up the land and plowing it and farming it.

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Critical message from
T. Boone Pickens: 

"America is in a hole and it's getting deeper every day. We import 70 percent of our oil at a cost of $700 billion a year - four times the annual cost of the Iraq war. I've been an oil man all my life, but this is one emergency we can't drill our way out of. But if we create a new renewable energy network, we can break our addiction to foreign oil. On January 20, 2009, a new President gets sworn in. If we're organized, we can convince Congress to make major changes toward cleaner, cheaper and domestic energy resources.To get this done, I need your help. Check out the plan. If you think it's worth fighting for, please join our effort, and encourage everyone you know to do the same."

PickensPlan.com

What's the Plan?

 

A Suprising Environmentalist
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T. Boone Pickens

Throughout his life, T. Boone Pickens has always followed his own path.

A number of his post-Mesa Petroleum initiatives reflect a long-standing vision about America’s reliance on fossil fuels and his love for both the land and individual rights.

Perhaps Pickens’ most dramatic move occurred in July 2008, when he launched a $58 million national advertising campaign to promote the Pickens Plan, an energy policy aimed at reducing the American addiction to foreign oil.

In television and print advertisements, in stories and every imaginable talk-show format, appearances before Congress, and town hall meetings across the country, he bluntly told other Americans: “I’ve been an oilman my whole life, but this is one emergency we can’t drill our way out of.” His scribbling white board presentations, in which he outlined the impact of Peak Oil and the U.S. dependence on imports, became water cooler talk throughout the nation.

“A fool with a plan is better than a genius with no plan, and we look like fools without a plan,” he repeatedly has said.

Millions of interested parties have visited a website he established to outline how the United States is spending several billions of dollars a year on foreign oil—“the largest transfer of wealth in the history of mankind,” and warned that if nothing was done, the country could very well be spending $10 trillion on foreign oil within a decade. Hundreds of thousands more signed up to be soldiers in his campaign to bring his solution — a combination of wind farms along the Wind Belt, the vast corridor that extends the length of the Great Plains, from Texas to the Canadian border, and a transfer of a portion of the natural gas from electricity generation to transportation use — to the forefront.

Once again, Pickens put his money where his mouth was. In August 2007, a Pickens-led coalition of Texas Panhandle landowners had filed documents with a state agency that details plan for the world's largest wind farm, projected for completion in late 2014. The project will add 4,000 megawatts of wind-generated electricity to the power grid in Texas when complete, enough to power 1.3 million homes.

In the process, he made new allies across political lines that surprised many pundits. News reports started speaking of former vice president Al Gore’s global warming awareness campaign and Pickens’ energy initiatives in the same sentences.

“To put it plainly, T. Boone Pickens is out to save America," said Carl Pope, executive director of the Sierra Club, after meeting with Pickens in 2008.

The Pickens Plan wasn’t the result of a sudden conversion, however. For years, Pickens had pressed presidents and industry representatives on the need for a coherent U.S. energy policy.

While Pickens was still with Mesa Petroleum, he became involved with natural gas fueling. He had a vision: to tap into natural gas as a vehicular fuel. His motivation was two-fold: one, to ensure a cleaner environment for future generations, and two, to lessen dependency on foreign oil.

While chairman of the National Natural Gas Vehicle Coalition for almost three years, Pickens traveled the country advocating the merits of natural gas. When he left Mesa Petroleum and its management wanted to divest of the natural gas fueling concerns, he purchased them and in 1997 formed Pickens Fuel Corp. He touted natural gas as the best alternative vehicular fuel because it’s a domestic resource that reduces our foreign oil consumption, and enhances America’s energy security; clean (NGV vehicles emit up to 95 percent less pollution than gasoline or diesel vehicles); less expensive than petroleum and hydrogen; and safe (lighter-than-air compressed natural gas is nontoxic and disperses quickly, and has a higher ignition temperature than gasoline and diesel fuel, which reduces the chances of accidental ignition).

Reincorporated as Clean Energy in 2001 and taken public in 2007, the company is the largest provider of vehicular natural gas (CNG and LNG) in North America with a broad customer base in the refuse, transit, shuttle, taxi, intrastate and interstate trucking, airport and municipal fleet markets.

photo collageTens of thousands of vehicles fuel at strategic locations in the United States and Canada. Customers include Los Angeles International Airport, Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, SuperShuttle, Foothill Transit, Waste Management, Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, SYSCO Foods, Ft. Worth Transportation Agency, Denver International Airport, Denver RTD, MTDB of San Diego and the US Navy.

Pickens’ other concerns also involved a dramatic connection to the land and its resources.

When Boone Pickens was 12, his father bought him a .22 rifle and taught him to shoot. His hometown, Holdenville, Oklahoma, had a natural beauty, rolling hills and placid streams where Pickens would hunt. The pockets of ugliness that early oil drilling pollution left behind there — scarred creeks and dead trees — had a deep impact on him at an early age. When as an adult he became a significant landowner, he felt a particular responsibility for its proper stewardship.

His Mesa Vista Ranch, in the Canadian River Valley of the Texas Panhandle, is a model for wildlife resource management. The 68,000-acre ranch would be odd shaped to a cattleman, but then cattle don’t roam there. Noted Texas outdoor writer Ray Sasser has called Mesa Vista "a Wild West equivalent of a southern gentlemen’s hunting plantation.”

Prior to Pickens’ first land purchase in 1971, the rolling hills, bluffs and creek beds there suffered from consistent overgrazing. The legendary entrepreneur immediately began a multi-step program to help the land recover, over time investing about millions in overall wildlife management strategies and facilities, installing substantial water sources, feed plots and native grass replanting, and power infrastructure.

The four creeks and ten miles on it that fronts the Canadian River offers premium wildlife cover. Thirty-five miles of buried water lines with outlets feed small waterholes at 1,000-foot intervals, benefiting wildlife from turkey, antelope, mule deer and white-tailed deer to pheasant, quail, and ducks. More than 300 quail feeders are kept full seven months a year to guarantee the birds never go hungry.

Pickens has supported an ongoing Oklahoma State biological study on the effect of heat and overgrazed habitat on young quail on the ranch. Records show consistent year-after-year quail production. The success with Mesa Vista spawned another business for Pickens, searching out other Texas Panhandle and western Oklahoma ranches and developing them on the same principles. His team cleans up the land, clear off any cattle grazing there, and allow natural vegetation to grow out, which provides nesting habitats.

While the ever-thinking Pickens feeds his passion at Mesa Vista, spare time spent there is hardly that. He has never relied on a master plan for wildlife improvements; rather Mesa Vista is a work in progress, and will remain so as long as its owner lives. He is constantly dreaming up improvements to the property, evidenced by the notebooks his ranch employees maintain at the ready to jot down the torrent of ideas that occur to Pickens as he drives through the ranch.

Pickens also has stepped to the forefront of national water resource development issues with a proposal to market surplus and stranded groundwater in the Texas Panhandle to urban areas in the state facing severe water supply shortages, including possible river transport plans that would benefit wildlife and the overall ecosystem of Texas Rivers. In the process, his Mesa Water has become the largest private holder of permitted groundwater rights in the United States.

Pickens and a group of more than 100 landowners formed Mesa Water in 1999 to develop groundwater from the Ogallala Aquifer under Roberts County in the far northeastern Texas Panhandle. Today, Mesa Water is prepared to sell 320,000 acre-feet of aquifer water per year to regions that desperately need it. In April 2005, the Region C planning group, responsible for water planning for much of North Texas, added the Mesa Water project to its list of alternative supply sources. Mesa Water is also listed as a possible supply source for North Texas Municipal Water District (NTMWD), Dallas Water Utilities (DWU), Region L and San Antonio Water System (SAWS).

The water is high quality, it is not needed for local irrigation because the land it rests under is unsuitable for farming, and studies support that supplies can support a prudent plan of drawing off water from the aquifer. Mesa Water can have a tremendous impact on the state’s water supply, diversity and availability. To put it in perspective, 320,000 acre-feet of water would satisfy the annual water needs of more than 1.5 million Texans — that means a lot in fast-growing regions like North Central Texas or San Antonio.

New York investment bank J.P. Morgan has agreed to finance a 328-mile pipeline project to the Dallas-Fort Worth region provided Mesa could find the customer there. If not, perhaps a pipeline will run to San Antonio or El Paso.

Pickens figures it’s only a matter of time before a deal reaches fruition.

 

 

 

 
 

© 2008 BP Capital Inc. LEGAL

T. Boone Pickens is currently the chairman and CEO of BP Capital, which operates energy focused commodity and equity funds. He is also the largest shareholder in Clean Energy, the largest provider of vehicular natural gas (CNG and LNG) in North America with a broad customer base in the refuse, transit, shuttle, taxi, police, intrastate and interstate trucking, airport and municipal fleet markets.