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Life After Death: The Pickens Plan fails, but is it over for good? July 17, 2009

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T. Boone Pickens, the billionaire who benefited from Texas oil, started a campaign for investment in renewable energy about a year ago. His “Pickens Plan” was sold to the public with a multi-million dollar PR campaign, but Pickens has now admitted defeat. Due to the current economic recession, and its impact on his fortune and credit lines, Pickens has decided to scrap plans to build the world’s largest wind farm, and has instead scaled his expectations down significantly. Yet, Pickens remains committed to promoting the benefits of wind energy and natural gas, and continues to use the strong relationships that he has built in the public and United States government over the last year.

For more on the rise and fall of the Pickens campaign, see the videos below. The first in one of the original ads run by Pickens and his organization. The second is a short segment on the failure of the plan. The third is about the recent Energy Independence Day, and should make it clear that Pickens is far from through.

Discussion Questions:

1.  Why is Pickens the ultimate pitchman for renewable energy?  What does he have that many others – including Al Gore – do not?

2.  Why do you think the PR for the Pickens Plan, despite its amazing funding, has somewhat failed?

3.  How has Pickens, despite some of the failures of his campaign, also succeeded?

4.  Looking ahead, what can Pickens do in the future to make his dream a reality?

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