Memorial Day traditionally signals the beginning of the summer driving season, and with it come demands for more domestic oil drilling.

As hot dogs sizzle on the grill and beaches fill with sunbathers, Big Oil's tired, annual refrain for drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge also signals that summer is here.

This summer I pledge that we do things differently. Let's commit to driving less and protecting our wilderness more.

When it comes to reducing our pain at the pump, conserving energy works and drilling in the Arctic Refuge doesn't.

Conservation measures and the use of alternative technologies in the last three years have cut the projected need for imported oil by more than 100 billion barrels between now and 2050, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration projections.

This is 10 times the oil that might be produced from the Arctic Refuge in more than a decade.

The best part is that leveraging alternative technologies cuts our need for oil imports without sacrificing our nation's greatest wilderness icon.

Let's celebrate the beginning of summer with a new energy policy: Drive less, protect more.