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For far too long, the United States has been without a long-range ener

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For far too long, the United States has been without a long-range ener  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Sep 2018, 10:10
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For far too long, the United States has been without a long-range energy plan. The Energy Policy Act of 2005 presents 1,700 pages and several hundred provisions attempting to elucidate such a plan. Many of the Act’s provisions are meant to spur innovative technologies, reduce American dependence on foreign oil, and keep a check on prices at the gas pump. These provisions include loan guarantees for companies that develop manufacturing processes that avoid producing greenhouse gases, and tax credits for both manufacturing and using environmentally conscious vehicles and appliances.

Though many of these provisions have merit, the Act is by no means a coherent plan for the future. There is no clear indication as to the extent of the nation’s long-term energy needs and no overall mechanism for either meeting those needs or managing the way we do business and live our lives so as to reduce those needs.

What the Act does provide is a slew of tax breaks and incentives for the petroleum, ethanol, and nuclear corporations that are already well served by government largess. And for every environmentally friendly provision, a free pass is given to a major energy provider. Oil and gas industries, for example, have been exempted from some clean water laws. Another portion of the Act makes it easier to obtain permits for power lines and oil wells on public lands. There is even a provision that would allow for the consolidation of public utilities, something that has been wisely forbidden for the last 80 or so years.

Competition among the big energy concerns might produce innovative and profitable products, but it is folly to leave something so important and complex as the production, distribution, and use of energy to the marketplace alone. The federal government needs to find people who can do the hard science, who understand international markets, and who can formulate a policy that will realistically and conscientiously provide for this country’s energy needs as our oil deposits inevitably dry up. A policy of this sort—the Kyoto Protocol—is already in existence, but too many of our politicians are leery of an internationally formulated document that they simplistically see as a giveaway of money and power to developing nations.


The author discusses the consolidation of public utilities in order to

a. illustrate a major problem of the Energy Act.
b. demonstrate why the Energy Act is not a coherent plan.
c. emphasize the risk of allowing permits for oil drilling on public lands.
d. show how energy distribution can become more efficient.
e. highlight the influence of energy lobbyists in formulating policy.


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New post 02 Oct 2018, 18:07

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Re: For far too long, the United States has been without a long-range ener &nbs [#permalink] 02 Oct 2018, 18:07
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