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How can America wean itself from fossil fuels when fossil fuels are so cheap?

America is supposedly the leader of the free world. What was the primary message during the presidential campaign? Energy independence, not the environment. We will continue to sacrifice our legacy, our natural resources that might better be left to subsequent generations rather than accept higher energy costs now that renewables, until now, can't supply economically (at least not without a carbon tax).

As long as our politicians can make campaign promises based on the cost of a gallon of gas, don't expect any negative news about the environment to make headlines.

While President Obama extols the virtue of clean natural gas, I live in rural Schoharie County which is ripe for fracking for natural gas. Never mind that it is a bucolic, pastoral part of nature. It has vast reservers of natural gas so, following President Obama's desire, it will soon be an industrial park and all the tourists who used to come here for our natural beauty will go elsewhere.

When you look at the cost of natural gas in America, it is about the fifth the cost of natural gas in Europe. Guess what? America is going to become the World's leader in natural gas exports. The "good" news is that natural gas has only half the carbon foot print of coal (we have billions of tons of coal to export to Asia---and there has been a massive ad blitz promoting "clean" coal).

Unless there is someone like a Randall Mills who can make low-energy nuclear reactions economic, fossil fuels are our albatross.


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    Nov 11 2012: I think that with our economy in the mess it's in, it's going to be very difficult to invest in the infrastructure and technology needed for change. Especially when oil and gas interests have such a strangle hold on our government, and they are allowed to invest unlimited sums into politics. I think it's going to take a crisis of some sort to motivate people individually and collectively.

    I wonder how many people after a hurricane invest in their own power systems? Although it takes some research, and investment, nearly every American household can purchase DIY solar and wind power for the home, as well as water heating. Why don't more people take advantage of that? It's the cost.

    How many people reading this chose to drive their car to work by themselves when more efficient options are available? How many cities are planned in such a way as to require everyone to get around by car?

    And don't even get me started about American energy companies. I recently interviewed with one of our nation's leading solar power companies, and I was shocked to learn that they had no interest or plans in using their own commercial solar power for their own buildings. Why? It was too expensive. I thought that was just horrible.

    So, I would say either a disaster or, hopefully, a brilliant energy invention that manages to survive the oil company strangle hold.
    • Nov 12 2012: You might be interested to know that Solyndra has filed a $1.5 billion anti-trust lawsuit against the Chinese. They allege a conspiracy exists between Chinese companies, banks and their government to "dump" cheap solar panels in the US with the expressed purpose of bankrupting American solar firms. Solyndra had developed a revolutionary new solar panel which "scared" the Chinese so they began dumping to shut down the American industry.

      Check out the progress in low-energy nuclear reaction technology, the Firestorm spark plug and modern versions of the Papp engine. These, as well as Randall Mills and his hydrinos, offer hope but not yet reality.

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