Friday, October 20, 2006

George Walker Bush, environmentalist.

The White House has a transcript of Bush's remarks at a conference on renewable energy. He's sure saying the right things. It's really a bloody shame that he isn't/hasn't followed through. I'm not going to hold my breath on it either, but at least the administration seems to be able to visualize reality.... Maybe it was the change of CoS?

Check it out...

...My worry is, however, that a low price of gasoline will make it complacent -- make us complacent about our future when it comes to energy, because I fully understand that energy is going to help determine whether or not this nation remains the economic leader in the world. We're doing fine now. We've got a really strong economy, and in order to make sure it's strong tomorrow we need to make sure we work on how we use energy.

Energy is -- look, let me just put it bluntly: We're too dependent on oil. We are a -- (applause.) And see, low gasoline prices may mask that concern. So, first, I want to tell you that I welcome the low gasoline prices, however it's not going to dim my enthusiasm for making sure we diversify away from oil.

We need to diversify away from oil for economic reasons. We live in a global world. When the demand for oil goes up in China or in India, it causes the price of crude oil to rise and, since we import about 60 percent of the crude oil we use, it causes our price to go up, as well, which means the economy becomes less competitive.

And then, of course, there's the national security concern for oil. Why? Well, we get oil from some countries who don't particularly care for us. They don't like what we stand for. They don't like it when we say, for the sake of peace, let us work in a way that we don't develop nuclear weapons, for example.

I spend a lot of time on national security issues, which you expect your President to do. And a lot of times those national security issues are involved with countries that have oil.
That was just the nice rhetoric though. The policy sustance of the speech was

1. Make the Research Tax Credit permanent.
2. Batteries/Electric cars/hybrids/fuel cells
3. EthanolEthanolEthanolEthanol (it was Missouri after all)
4. Nuclear, clean nuclear
5. Drill the Gulf, mine more coal, LNG
6. Token attention/joking about solar and wind.

And once again the president bragged about being a C student.

1 sounds good, 2 is way overhyped, although electric cars and hybrids are fairly good. 3, what a joke. Marginal EROI, still high carbon emissions. I'm a big big fan of Nuclear, especially the Megatons to Megawatts program, buying Russia's loose nukes for civilian generators, so I'm quite keen on 4. 5 is just forestalling the inevitable with no reduction in emission, arguably the greater problem than peaking oil production. And, while wind and sun are too variable to solve our energy problems and have their own EROI issues, it seems like they deserve more than token joking attention.

We'll see where this goes...


At 7:29 PM, Blogger JayBandit said...

Bush isn't pushing ethanol for the environmental benefits; he just is giving that off to appease the environmentalists. Ethanol is the first step towards US independency of foreign oil.

I found your blog through the NEI website. I think you have some well thought out opinions (even if I disagree with some of them), and I'm going to link to your blog on mine. I'm connected with a bunch of bloggers that are connected through the University of Illinois campus. I hope you give us a look.


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