Obama's Energy Plan -- Algae

By Susan Jones | February 24, 2012 | 9:24am EST

President Barack Obama speaks at the University of Miami Field House in Coral Gables, Fla., Thursday, Feb. 23, 2012. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

(CNSNews.com) - "The American people aren't stupid," President Obama said on Thursday -- as he insisted that drilling for more oil on U.S. territory is "not a strategy to solve our energy challenge."

The president's solution? Algae, for one.

There are no quick fixes to the nation's eneergy problem, the president said, dismissing Republican calls for more drilling as a "bumper sticker."

"We’re making new investments in the development of gasoline and diesel and jet fuel that’s actually made from a plant-like substance -- algae," the president said at a campaign stop in Florida. "You’ve got a bunch of algae out here, right?  If we can figure out how to make energy out of that, we’ll be doing all right."

Obama said the nation could replace up to 17 percent of the oil it imports for transportation  with "this fuel that we can grow right here in the United States.  And that means greater energy security.  That means lower costs.  It means more jobs.  It means a stronger economy."

Obama's mention of algae drew snorts from one prominent pundit.

Speaking on Fox News with Bret Baier, Charles Krauthammer said he was "impressed by the president's analysis of this situation."

"He talked about something really revolutionary today -- algae -- a $14-million dollar grant for the development of algae. So it's not oil. His solution is algae."

Krauthammer quoted Obama as saying algae can be grown right here in the United states:

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"Now it happens that algae will grow anywhere on earth," Krauthammer continued. "It grows in oceans and lakes and ponds and your swimming pools, when the pool man is on vacation, in snow, in ice, on soil, lives well on turtles, sloths, the bark of trees and rocks.

"Now why are we drilling for oil?" Krauthammer continued. "We are the Saudi Arabia of rocks. We have a mountain range called the Rockies, and we are allowing ourselves to be dominated by these oil producers."

In his "energy" speech -- which comes as gasoline prices are zooming toward record levels -- Obama downplayed "annual gas price spikes that happen every year."  He said the nation needs an "all-of-the-above strategy that develops every available source of American energy. Yes, oil and gas, but also wind and solar and nuclear and biofuels, and more."

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