Monday, October 16, 2006

The path to energy independence

If we had leadership, the US could -- at least -- be on the path to reducing our dependency on oil from the Middle East.

Remember? Seventeen of the nineteen 9/11 hijackers came from Saudi Arabia: the country that provides a huge portion of our oil imports and is a literal breeding ground for Wahhabi extremism.

Amount of U.S. oil used to run vehicles: 7.3 mbd or 43 percent. (Doubling our vehicle efficiency would therefore reduce our oil consumption by 3.6 mbd -- and we import only 2 mbd from the entire Middle East.)

Average miles per gallon of all U.S. cars in 1973: 13. Average mpg of all U.S. cars in 1985: 20. Average mpg of the most efficient cars currently on the market: over 40. Average mpg of the Toyota prototype AXV: 98.

Obvious solutions to our problems are out there -- but our government (both Repubs and Dems) don't want to rock the boat and put us on a course to energy independence... This is criminal. They'd rather see us dealing with Middle Eastern governments to buy oil for Hummer's than mandate strict fuel economy standards...

Vote them ALL out of office this Nov.


skip sievert said...

It is all a scam to make money. Our society runs on faith . This faith is in money. Money is an abstract concept that measures another abstract concept , debt.

Bad choices can only be made so many times. They pile up after a while.

They are piled up to our noses now. If we are not careful we may be overcome from them.

Peter C said...

National politics have yet to emerge out of the shadows of an economy that was very dependent upon heavy industry.

It wasn't many years ago that a generally accepted number of auto industry related jobs as part of the whole economy was 1 in 5. That's 20% of all US employment based on the internal combustion engine.

Political reality(at its best) always lags behind civil reality. Add the 'human' elements, i.e.; religion, culture, etc. and the process slows to molasses. ironically, exactly the plan of the Founding Fathers.

Now that the US Auto industry is in tatters, it becomes more viable politically for bold(i.e.; reasonable) action. Raising CAFE standards would be a great first step towards eliminating our dependence on any foreign source of energy.

The next step is the government sponsership of a 'Manhatten Project' for energyI I snagged the phrase from Tom Friedman a few years ago).

Here is a method to fund this project. I can think of nothing more important than achieving a high level of renewable energy usage for more reasons than I can name.

The long term benefits of undertaking such a project are obvious in the short term and without doubt postive int ehe long term resulting from unforseen uses to the global public welfare by technologies that will be discovered.

my two cents

Reign of Reason said...

Totally agree… With real energy-leadership the country would be innovating our way to the “energy technology” of the 21st century. However, we don’t have anything close to an energy policy. As in Iraq, our energy policy is “stay the course” …

of course, that path is steaming head-long toward a cliff (i.e. – competition with China and India for dwindling resources). The short-sightedness of our leaders is amazing.