Wednesday, April 27, 2005

'Vote for me; I promise you less'

I recently did question and answer sessions after two local showings of the movie, "The End of Suburbia." Each time the question arose, "Why aren't our politicians talking about the issue of oil depletion?" My response has been that nobody in America gets elected by saying, "Vote for me; I promise you less." (A couple of brave congressmen from Maryland recently broached the subject of peak oil. Perhaps they don't care about whether they get re-elected.) The last person to make a serious go of this message was Jimmy Carter, and we all know what happened to him.

For some reason, the same political rules don't apply in Europe where the European parliament voted to require a 10 percent cut in energy use by 2015. No doubt much of this will be achieved through new efficiencies forced on industry and residences by the law. But, I believe some of it will have to be achieved through curtailment or, at least, the rearranging of how things are now done. That means less of something.

How can we import the magic elixir that allows Europeans to begin preparing for an energy transition before a crisis has hit? We need that elixir badly!

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