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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 13 2012: Fossil fuels are not cheap.
    They are destroying the world environment.
    You consider that cost cheap?
    There are many other sources of energy that are renewable (fossil fuels ain't unless the death of billions of humans can decay into oil), clean and for all practical purposes, free.
    Wind, solar, tidal, wave, electric, geothermal.

    Take the money out of the equation and all can be done.
    Nothing costs money. Everything costs people and with the way things are going, it is going to cost everyone's lives and futures. That to me is expensive. Maybe not for you. Your life may not be worth much.

    People talk about, "how much is it going to cost? Who is going to pay for it?"
    Well, if you don't get off of fossil fuels, everyone will pay for it with the complete degradation of life, the planet, resource wars, starvation and so on. Pretty steep a price.

    Things don't "GET DONE" because of money.
    Things "DON'T GET DONE" because of money.
    • Nov 13 2012: What you say about the destruction of the environment is all too true. I've heard that the true cost of coal in America would be about $350 billion more than it is if you factored in environmental effects. It is also estimated that about half a million people die every year because of coal-related diseases.

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