President-elect Barack Obama will nominate Steven Chu, a Nobel physics laureate and advocate of alternative energy research, as his energy secretary, a Democratic aide said on Wednesday.More Steven Chu, here, here, here, and here. The last is Wiki: see Dr. Chu's powerpoint on alternative energy linked at the bottom of that page.
The laboratory's website said Chu was an early advocate for finding scientific solutions to climate change and had guided the laboratory on a new mission to become the world leader in alternative and renewable energy research, particularly the development of carbon-neutral sources of energy.
I take issue with some of his thinking (eg. nuclear) but these details are nothing when compared to the much more urgent issue now of radically cutting carbon emissions before we cross the feedback threshold. Appointing Steven Chu to such a position, and giving him a wartime budget means we might have half a chance of saving ourselves from the worst effects of climate change. This literally means saving civilisation.
The Americans are getting serious.