Friday, January 26, 2007

An Energy Policy that Would Work

Charles Krauthammer points out that energy policy has been a frequent subject in State of the Union addresses over the last 30 years, but that there has not been much of value to show for it:

By my count, 24 of the 34 State of the Union addresses since the oil embargo of 1973 have proposed solutions to our energy problem.

The result? In 1973 we imported 34.8 percent of our oil. Today we import 60.3 percent.

He goes on to argue that the political class will not be willing to implement measures that would actually be effective in reducing the consumption of fossil fuels and dependence on foreign oil. Those measures are:

  • Reduce demand by driving up the price of gasoline by implementing a fuel tax raising the price to $4/gallon.
  • Increase domestic production by drilling in the Arctic.
  • Increase the use of nuclear power.

Regarding all three of these potential solutions, Krauthammer is right on both counts. The measures would be effective in accomplishing their stated purposes, and they are politically inviolable.

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