Help Our Economy by Fixing Our Energy

Christoper M. Mason By Christoper M. Mason , 18th Sep 2012 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>News>Environment

Why America needs to push harder for renewable energy.

Fossil Fuels=Bad, Environment=Good

The debate on Global Warming is a very contemporary one and both sides have their points. I am not here to share my feelings on Global Warming, at least not yet. However, perhaps in part due to Global Warming (the event or the idea of it depending on your viewpoint) the need for renewable energy has become apparent, at least for me. Whether you're a believer of Global Warming or not, it quite simply cannot be denied that a vast amount of damage is done by the production and consumption of fossil fuels, the big three being coal, natural gas, and oil. Though the United States is less than five percent of the global population, we consume approximately a quarter of the world's energy. Both our production and consumption of these fossil fuels are destroying our environment and our health. Hydraulic fracturing can have devastating effects on our water supply, you don't have to go back as far as Exxon-Valdez to see the consequences of an oil spill (thanks to BP!), and coal burning plants shorten the lives of close to 24,000 Americans every year. Despite this, major energy companies are pushing for more drilling and less regulations (the result of which would probably end up like this). None of that matters though when you're making record profits.

I'm Not Against Profits

Using less fossil fuels for our countries' energy will obviously have an effect the opposite of what oil, gas, and coal companies want at least when it comes to their bottom line. As Americans we take many things for granted and have become complacent. We as a society should not be fine with the damage being done directly to our environment and indirectly to our bodies simply because fossil fuels provide the majority of the energy we use now. We should be striving for an even better quality of life for ourselves and the generations to come. If the profits made by the major companies were used to research and develop renewable sources as opposed to ridiculous CEO bonuses, said companies would perhaps be able to regain the profits they will lose from the inevitable shift to come. The shift in our energy sources is inevitable because if the fossil fuel corporations get their way, then a shift will be forced upon us through pure survival instinct. Things will continue to deteriorate until the people refuse or are unable to consume their goods. At this point the corporations own operations would decline and they would likely cease to exist. The solution of renewable energy itself is therefore not only good for us, the average citizen, but the corporations as well.

What Renewable Energy Would Do For Us

Now one of the biggest arguments against renewable energy is that it is far more costly to develop and maintain at current technological levels. This is one of the reasons why I suggested oil, gas and coal companies take lead in the researching and development of such sources. Over the past decade these industries have seen record profits and should have more than enough capital to undertake such a large endeavor. We cannot trust the government to properly manage this shift in energy sources, nor should it with our current economic situation. If renewable energy was achieved however, think about how much cleaner and better of a country we would live in. Not only that, but renewable sources would have to be managed and run locally, not only adding jobs, but spreading them out across the country. Our foreign dependence on oil would drop to probably nothing. We would be able to sell the technology and our maintenance services to our allies boosting our power in the global economy. Countries like China, which is now the worlds largest consumer of coal, would have to turn to us as it's people suffer the health consequences of such massive production (although with China's stance on population control, this one might be a stretch). For these reasons and many more, we owe it to ourselves, our health, our environment, and our children to cast off the shackles of fossil fuel and advance into the new age of renewable energy.

Tags

America, American Politics, Business, China, Climate Change, Economics, Economy, Energy, Fracking, Global Energy, Global Warming, Jobs, Politics

Meet the author

author avatar Christoper M. Mason
23 y/o majoring in business. Went to Iraq when I was 19. Partied professionally between 20-22. I live in Brooklyn, but I'm originally from New Jersey. This is what I do when I have insomnia.

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Comments

author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
21st Sep 2012 (#)

Most of the recent conflicts have energy as the trigger. Energy surplus countries are few but importers are many. Energy independence is the only way forward and solar has real potential. And the poorer countries will benefit more as they have abundant sunshine mostly throughout the year like in Asia and Africa. US & Europe should show the way ahead and lead the rest also into the promising era of energy independence. Imagine the freight costs too over and above release from pollution. Thanks for the highlight, Christopher - siva

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author avatar Ptrikha
24th Jan 2014 (#)

Instead of subsidising Petrol and Diesel, and giving tax breaks to big corporates, why don't the government heavily subsidize Renewable energy generation and usage for say 5 years to begin with?

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author avatar vpaulose
22nd Sep 2012 (#)

Nice info. Thank you.

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author avatar Joseph Amditis
6th Dec 2012 (#)

Great article!

I know there are still scores of people out there who are laboring under the unfortunate delusion that climate change is still a topic that is being debated, but in reality the only industrialized nation still having that "debate" is the United States.

Sooner or later the US will have to come to terms with the fact that climate change is real. My only hope is that, when that time comes, it's not already too late.

You lay out some great points here, keep it up!

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