Everyone is excited about rumors that President Obama will name Ernest Moniz to run the Department of Energy. Reactions range from "Who is Ernest Moniz?" to "What happened to the other guy?" to "Who was the other guy?"
Well, we are here to answer those questions! (The first one, anyway; we've answered the other two before.) Since you live a fast-paced lifestyle, always on the go, we've broken it up into bite-sized pieces, one bit of info at a time. You are welcome in advance.
Who is Ernest Moniz?
Well, he might be the next secretary of energy -- if Obama nominates him and if the Senate approves him. It is possible that in two months time he will be of very little interest to you, having not been confirmed. Or he will be of very little interest to you because he was confirmed, but you, like most Americans, are fairly indifferent to the office of secretary of energy.
But you knew that. So here's who he is, as articulated by Reuters, which appears to have been first with rumors of his imminent nomination.
Moniz, a former undersecretary of energy during the Clinton administration, is director of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Energy Initiative, a research group that gets funding from industry heavyweights including BP, Chevron, and Saudi Aramco for academic work on projects aimed at reducing greenhouse gases.
Ha ha. Sounds great! We will come back to this part, obviously.
At MIT, Moniz led intensive studies about the future of coal, nuclear energy and natural gas, and he helped attract funding and research momentum to energy projects on campus.
People familiar with Moniz's work said, if chosen, he would bring his own energy and pragmatism to the job. …
Moniz earned kudos for a pragmatic approach toward using research to find ways to reduce carbon pollution from fossil fuels and transition to cleaner forms of energy.
We'll come back to this, too.
What does he look like?
Well, he looks like this:
But more evocatively, he kind of looks like a Founding Father who teaches high-school English in New Hampshire.