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Monday

New "Energy Team" to Save America?

Could the new "Energy Team" in Washington mean real energy policy for America for the first time in over 30 years? This "Green Dream Team" will need to be truly outstanding to confront the tasks at hand and to face probable resistance from industry and Congress.

According to news reports, Carol Browner is slated to be senior White House adviser to coordinate energy and environmental policy, while Steven Chu will be energy secretary, and Lisa Jackson will be the new head of the Environmental Protection Agency.

If it is to survive as a sovereign nation, America must invest in next-generation, green-transformative technologies. But it won't be easy, as Congress just gave away literally trillions in bailout money to failing banks, Wall Street and credit card businesses that don't deserve it. These companies only had to fill out a two-and-a-half page application to receive these funds, and we seem to have no oversight for how and where that taxpayer money is being spent. Compare this funny business with the Big 3 U.S. automakers getting the third degree, with a much larger application and several Congressional hearings grilling them on specifics - and rightfully so, but it's for a fraction of the money and many more jobs at stake! In the past several presidential campaigns, credit card companies have been the leading financial contributors - what can you imagine they're getting in return?

Some of that massive amount of taxpayer money handed over to the banks, etc., would have been better spent on an energy transformation geared towards independence from foreign oil, such as the Pickens Plan. Right now, Americans need new jobs as well, and with his new energy plan President-Elect Obama has promised "5 Million new Green Jobs...that cannot be outsourced." Maybe that will help Americans recover from the Big Three auto bailout pickle. In reality, Americans should not bail out the car companies just to keep those same businesses and jobs that are part of the problematic past, when in fact we need new business models and next-generation technology that is part of the future instead.

The Big 3 U.S. auto manufacturers are considering an all-electric vehicle, but they also need to consider a selection of diesel-hybrid plug-ins too, geared towards an algae-based biofuel, which eliminates the food vs. fuel concerns. And the average diesel engine is 35% more efficient than a gasoline engine!

America has many other energy concerns as well - we need a new next-generation electrical grid. Experts say that the U.S. electric grid is obsolete, which some claim will hinder the Pickens Plan. I disagree, as solar panels and wind turbines could be a wise option for many areas, as would algae and hemp biofuel.

In any event, America needs a new energy plan based on alternative fuels, and let's hope this "Green Energy Dream Team" will deliver at last.


Sources:

Mr. Obama’s Green Team
Obama to Introduce Energy Team
US electric grid is obsolete, say experts
Algae: The Biofuel Revolution
Revenge of the Electric Car
Campaign Contributions from Credit Card Companies

5 comments:

The Green Girl said...

Excellent blog - this is all so exciting!

Did you see Obama's speech? Fantastic!

I'm feeling very hopeful right now. :)

Thanks.

Anonymous said...

It will be very interesting to see if Obama and his group will actually use climate change as an excuse to massively develop the open spaces of the west or use green energy in a green fashion. My guess is that he will choose development. Obama does not strike me as a guy who has a history of being outdoors. He came to our state and said, "Y'all got a lot of sun here!" He also said that there is plenty of open space with nothing in it". He clearly does not really understand the biodiversity of arid lands. In the Sonoran Desert, there are so many claims on the last undeveloped land to develop solar farms, that if the energy companies get the blessing of Obama, we will lose most of it with the exception of national parks and wilderness which are only about 1 percent of it. I believe Obama's environmental policy is tunnel visioned on climate. Climate is very important, but throwing out our last open spaces is a fatal mistake. I hope his administration can listen to the people. My gut feeling is that he will sacrifice much of our land in a way that is wasteful, but his priority is more of a win/win fantasy that we can restart Wall Street and save the environment. I also know that his staff is fully aware that for one of these powerlines alone, the Green Path powerline that will be for Los Angeles, CA will require the seizure of close to 3,000 private properties, yet that is never mentioned. The problem is lobbyists who want all this public land for big energy development have donated too much into our political system, just like big oil, and public land will be easy to develop right away if Obama gives the green light. Our system is broken. More here: www.basinandrangewatch.org/Sola....html

I am not a supporter of either of the two big political parties, but I would hope that Obama would listen to the people who will have their homes and local ecosystems destroyed. The other thread I started proves there are green energy alternatives. Tell Obama...

erthluva said...

I am an Independent so I'm not a big supporter of Democrats or Republicans either but since the US hasn't had real energy policy for at least 30 years - I think I'll give Obama a chance before I throw negative darts his way.

Obama's speech today along with the energy team he has assembled gives me the impression that he is very serious about these issues and has a plan for action that could potentially put America back on top once again.

The Bush W. Administration has been a dismal failure over the last 8 years turning every problem into a major crisis. These last 8 years have very depressing for me - I am looking forward to more positive things on many issues.

This is a pivotal time in American history. We can turn these lemons into lemonade or suffer the consequences which may mean a collapse. The thought of Saudi Arabia or China taking over is enough motivation for me to get serious about American energy policy asap.

Goose said...

We need gas prices to go up!

erthluva said...

No worries, petro prices are about to go up again. Today in the news...

Crude Reality

"With crude oil a few hours away from closing the year with its first annual decline in 7 years, OPEC’s hopes of reversing that slide and bringing oil back to the cartel’s comfort level of $75 a barrel may rest on keeping one early New Year’s resolution."

The Saudi's need to price a barrel of oil to at least $55 - just to be able to cover the expenses of Saudi Arabia. So, they desire to keep it at around $75 as a middle ground to minimize the efforts of those who want to go green and get off of foreign oil.

Did you see the bit about this on "60 minutes" a few weeks ago from Dec 7th?

Saudi Arabia Bullish On Oil's Future

The price will go back up to probably just under $3 per gallon I assume.