Oklahoma Corporation Commissioner Denise Bode
is resigning her post effective May 31 to lead a new natural gas foundation in Washington, DC. Bode, who was appointed to the commission in 1997 by former Gov. Frank Keating, said she is in the process of forming the American Clean Skies Foundation. "Today, there is a national debate on climate change and energy," she said. "We see policymakers promoting alternative fuels such as wind, solar, biofuels and nuclear. These are all legitimate alternatives -- although some much less than others -- yet none can offer energy in great abundance at a reasonable price any time soon. On the other hand, burning natural gas instead of the principal alternatives reduces greenhouse gas emissions by approximately 50%. We intend to make natural gas not only part of the debate, but the solution." Bode said she has talked with gas industry officials about the foundation, including Oklahoma City-based Chesapeake Energy Corp. However, she said the foundation "is not going to be a Chesapeake entity." Chesapeake has admitted funding an anti-coal campaign in Texas (see Power Market Today
, Feb. 20
) Gov. Brad Henry, a Democrat, will name Bode's replacement. Bode's current term was to expire in 2010. Early in her career Bode worked as a staffer on Capitol Hill and later headed up the Independent Petroleum Association of America lobbying group in Washington.