When an oil man finds the wind: T. Boone Pickens on his adventure in alternative energy

Apr 29, 2010

In 2008, T. Boone Pickens, the man who made billions of dollars as an old-fashioned oil tycoon, famously called for the need to finally break the American addiction to oil. He did so by advocating for vast government and private sector investment in alternative energy sources, from solar to wind, and also put his money where his mouth is with the development of a huge wind farm in Texas and the founding of Clean Energy, a company that advances the use of natural gas for mass transportation. After spending $60 million of his own money to promote the “Pickens Plan” for energy independence and several million more on the purchase of property and wind turbines, T. Boone has very mixed results to show for his efforts—his massive wind farm in Texas is dead and he’s shifted much of his energy to natural gas. T. Boone is sticking to his guns, though, claiming that in 10 years, the U.S. will not be importing oil from the Middle East. Is the Pickens Plan still a realistic goal?

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