Thursday, April 24, 2008

Earth Day, What we didn't Say

Marc, Mike, and I each took a crack at Earth day a couple of days ago. We talked about the little things we could do on Earth Day and throughout the year to get a little greener and make the world a more livable place.

What we didn't talk about is what the government can do. Frankly, what the government MUST do. I believe in this country. I believe in our ability to rise to challenges. We did it to stop the Nazis, we did it to win the space race, we did it to defeat the Soviet Union. I believe that we can beat Global Warming. I believe we can also rid ourselves of the carbon economy and create a new future for ourselves and the rest of the world. While we try and squeak and squirm out of our way of protocols like the Kyoto treaty, what we should be doing is leading the way.

I often imagine the next president, whoever he or she is delivering an address from the Oval office, similar to that of President Kennedy's moon landing speech. "Before 2020 this nation will end the use of all fossil fuels in automobiles." It would be an easy argument to make, the petroleum economy isn't meant to last. Even if you don't believe in global warming, on the sheer economics of it, don't we want a diversified fuel base? Automobiles that could run on hydrogen or plug in? Don't we want the option? Or would we prefer to be tethered to gasoline forever?

We need a bold agenda, and a deadline. Only then will Americans collectively move on from their fossil fuel burning ways. Then all of the sudden or competitors would see our economy booming as green collar jobs flood our marketplace and Americans begin to run their homes on energy gained from the sun and wind and rivers. As America leaps into the 21st century, our competitors would see us unencumbered by oil prices and decide that their own fate shouldn't rest with OPEC, but within its own borders.

It can be done. It must be done.

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