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					Pursuing Alternative Forms of Energy
Record high prices at American gas pumps and continued trouble-brewing in
the Middle East, Nigeria, and other areas of importance to the oil-driven
economy have made it clear to Americans that we are in need of developing
many new avenues of energy supply and production. In short, we need to
reduce our dependency on oil, for it is ultimately finite and, frankly,
the cheap sources of oil (not all oil—just the stuff that is cheap to
remove from the earth) are running out. Energy consultants and analysts
are insistent that cheap oil has “peaked” or is very soon going to peak.
What this means for us is an expensive future—unless we can find new
sources of powering our mechanized and electronic civilization, new
sources which are alternatives to oil.
We must also switch to alternative forms of energy because our present
forms are too damaging to the atmosphere. While this write does not
believe that the global warming trend is much, if at all, sustained by
the activities of mankind (in short, it's a natural cycle and there's
nothing we can do about it except prepare for the effects of it), we
certainly do contribute at present to the destruction of the environment
and to things like air pollution with our energy sources as they are.
Coal is another source of energy that we need to wean ourselves off of—
again, it is finite, and it is filthy, and the mining of it is dangerous
and environmentally disruptive. We can also explore new, streamlined
methods for producing electricity that we presently generate so much of
via hydro-power so that we are less disruptive of the environment when we
have need of constructing things such as large dams.
Developing nations which have turned industrialized in recent decades
especially will need the benefits of alternative energy research and
development, for they are presently doing much more environmental damage
than the United States. The United States, Japan, and some European
nations have been implementing studies into and programs for the
development of alternative energy sources, and are therefore already
leading the way in doing less environmental damage. The developing
nations such as China and India need to look to Japan and the West as
examples of what research and development to give government backing and
private investment currency to. We could also add great robustness to our
own economy by being at the forefront of such alternative energy sources
development and then marketing the technologies and services to nations
like India, China, Brazil, and so on and so forth.
Biofuels from things like “supertrees” and soybeans, refined
hydroelectric technology, natural gas, hydrogen fuel cells, the further
building of atomic energy plants, the continued development of solar
energy photovoltaic cells, more research into wind-harnessed power—all of
these are viable energy sources that can act as alternatives to the
mammoth amounts of oil and coal that we presently are so dependent on for
our very lifestyles. The energy of the future is green.

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