In written responses to Senate Armed Services Committee policy questions last week, President Obama’s nominee for Secretary of Defense, former Nebraska Republican Senator Chuck Hagel, said that the military would benefit from continued investment in alternative fuels and energy efficiency efforts despite the threat of budget cuts. He agreed with Defense Department policy that alternative replacement fuels can and must be cost competitive with petroleum-based products, and, while appearing before the Committee January 31, said that reducing the Pentagon’s multibillion-dollar energy bill will be a high priority if he is confirmed.