Monday, June 16, 2008

A Solid Case for Renewable Energy

$140 a barrel oil. Surely that's enough to get us off our duffs and get serious about renewable energy.

Brit prime minister Gord Brown calls today's oil prices "the most worrying situation in the world." A bit of hyperbole in that one, perhaps, but still...

Brown said there was a growing view that the price of oil was "increasingly dependent, not just on today's demands, but on what people perceive as demand outstripping supply next year and in the long term."

So, you see, it all comes down to perception. It's all about perception of what oil demand will be next year and there's not a lot we can do on the supply side of the equation. But - and here's the kicker - there are so many solutions open to us on the demand side. Everything from smaller, more fuel efficient cars; smaller and cheaper to heat housing; and, of course, renewable energy.

Of course, our Furious Leader might not see things that way. As a net producer of oil, admittedly dependent on ersatz oil production, the economic impacts are different for Canada than they are for major net importers such as that country just across the line. There's gold in them thar tar pits, plenty of it, and the best part is that most of it is just where he wants it - in Alberta.

Remember when Stephen Harper denounced the global warming issue as a "great socialist plot" to transfer wealth. Well his tar sands pet project increasingly sounds like a "great capitalist plot" to suck wealth out of the rest of Canada and transfer a bit to Alberta and the lion's share to the main beneficiaries, American oil companies developing Athabasca.

Isn't it time for a government that's not wed to the Tar Sands and Big Oil?

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