How to Tell if Bush is Serious about Ending US Dependence on Foreign Petroleum
Bush said last night he wanted to end the dependence of the United States on foreign petroleum. That is not the right goal, since if we just burned coal and ran electric cars we could be independent. But we’d accelerate global warming and give ourselves black lung.
The goal should be vastly reducing our use of hydrocarbons. Global warming is going to drown a lot of our coastal areas and send hurricanes on more of our cities if it keeps accelerating this way. Once the arctic shelves go into the drink and the ocean heats up sufficiently, you could have a rise in sea level of 20 feet. New Orleans, as bad as it was, would look like a picnic in comparison with this level of catastrophe.
The way you could tell Bush was serious would be if he ordered the Pentagon to use green sources of energy where possible. If a major US bureacracy spent even a few billions on things like solar power and electric vehicles, there would be technological breakthroughs and prices would plummet.
Or Bush could rescind some of his tax cuts for the super-rich and use the money as incentive for green energy.
But as long as Bush, who is as he keeps reminding us, the chief executive officer of the US government, doesn’t even require his own employees to try to use less petroleum, then all he is doing is mouthing plattitudes he stole from Al Gore and John Kerry, without intending to do more than flap his lips.
In the old SPD/Green government in Germany, substantial strides were made toward profitable solar power companies, because of government investment and support. That is what a real energy policy would look like, Mr. Bush. Get one.