The proposed Energy Mobilization Board has nowhere near the authority it needs to help meet the nation's future energy needs, according to a new study by the National Academy of Public Administration.
"EMB should be an integral part of the executive office of the president and its chairman must be an alter ego to the president," a panel of experts formed by the academy said in a report issued yesterday. "The importance of the energy mobilization agency dictates that it report directly to the president."
As EMB has been proposed to Congress the panel points out, it will have no power to get national energy production and consumption goals or to coordinate public and private efforts to achieve those goals.
"The EMB should be able to cut across department lines, it should have access to the president," said Sheldon S. Cohen, former commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service and chairman of the panel. "The EMB should not be a think tank, it should be a do-tank because that's what you need.
The panel also called on Congress to strengthen the proposed Synthetic Fuels Corp. to make it more of a governmental agency and less of a private corporation. It said the SFC should be modeled along the lines of the Tennessee Valley Authority.
"In our view, SFC must be established as a wholly-owned governmental corporation," the panel said. "This will clarify its status and facilitate coordination with EMB, the Department of Energy and other governmental programs related to the development and production of synthetic fuels."