Includes thoughts and comments about energy needs, resources, conservation and their relationship to politics at home and around the world.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Last night, the President delivered his 2007 State of the Union address before a packed House chamber. He reviewed his administration's accomplishments here at home, announced plans he would be sending to Congress to improve things further in the areas of health, education and the economy. Once again he stressed the importance of victory in Iraq by noting that "regardless of how you voted on the war in Iraq, you didn't vote for failure!" He asked Congress and the nation to give his "surge" plan a chance to work. In all I thought it was a good strong speech and, while it probably won't win over his haters, he let us know he was not going to give up in the Middle East. Bush also laid out plans to reduce dependence on foreign oil by reducing the nation's consumption of gasoline, developing broader use of alternative energy sources including solar, wind, fuel cells and nuclear.

Each alternative to fossil fuels as an energy source has a place in the scheme of things. I know of no one who disputes that, but there is a lot of disagreement over when, where and how. Solar energy makes sense where sunny weather is the dominant condition; wind is similar as in the case of the Swedish island of Oland; the hydrogen fuel cell offers an outstanding propect; and nuclear should be expanded now. However, no combination of these alternatives will totally do away with our need for petroleum at least not until we find substitutes for the many non-fuel products made from petroleum. These include the whole family of plastics that are used in automobiles, packaging, furniture, clothing, pipe, and equipment too numerous to mention; white oils for certain medicines; a myriad of lubricating oils blended to make crankcase oils, transmission fluids, gear oils, hydraulic fluids, transformer oils and turbine oils; automotive and industrial greases; synthetic rubber goods including tires; candles; fertilizers; asphalt paving materials; and many more.

I find it strange that none of the boobirds arrayed against Bush ever mention these critical petroleum products.


Post a Comment

<< Home