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OpEdNews Op Eds    H1'ed 6/17/15

Solar Power: Fiddling While the Earth Burns.

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Climate summit: world leaders fiddle while the planet burns.
Climate summit: world leaders fiddle while the planet burns.
(Image by Friends of the Earth International)
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The U.S.A. has no limit on the amount of money, treasure, lives, and inalienable rights it is willing to sacrifice against Terrorism. It justifies it by saying that it is necessary to keep the American people safe. There is little proof that it does.

An American today, and into the far future, is much more likely to suffer from human-caused climate change than any terrorist attack. What is more is that the military knows that climate change is a bigger threat than terrorism and ISIS/ISIL.

But the response is to put off corrective action to far into the future, minimize a response, debate the seriousness, deny its cause and fiddle while the Earth literally burns .

The U.S.A. has done little but wringing its hands about the problems with fossil fuel, even before climate change became a known major threat. For half a century the response to the need for alternative energy has been to procrastinate. President after president have come and gone.

We Must Reduce Our Dependency on Mideast Oil.
We Must Reduce Our Dependency on Mideast Oil.
(Image by Environment 360)
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On April 18th, 1977 President Jimmy Carter made a formal address to the nation on energy. [ Watch it here.]

Carter warned of a world that he said was simply running out of oil. The growing demand was more than new supplies from discoveries, he said. He said that imported oil, especially from the Middle East, had proved to be too unreliable.

Earlier, under President Richard Nixon, the Arab countries had led an oil embargo by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) against the U.S. The U.S. had angered the Arab member countries by backing Israel in the 1973 Yom Kippur War.

Oil prices skyrocket 400% because of the oil embargo. Oil jumped from $3 per barrel to $12 per barrel. Shortages of gasoline caused rationing and long lines at the gas pumps. The sudden jump in oil prices led to hyperinflation. The public was outraged and frightened.

In his speech, Carter warned that if the government did not take the responsibility for a national energy policy, then the American people would face a decline in their standard of living. He said that future generations would suffer.

Carter and the country faced another "Oil Shock" in 1978-1979 after the Iran Revolution took much of Iran's oil out of production. It came at a time of high world demand for oil. The price of oil rose to $40 per barrel.

Fear-mongers predicted that gas-guzzling automobiles would be ditched by the side of the road as useless. Gun battles broke out between motorists in hours-long gas lines. Gasoline purchases were rationed. People turned to more fuel efficient imported automobiles.

Carter had hoped to rally the American people to meet the energy crisis. Instead, as the New York Times said, Carter's speech had "depressed and irritated" them.

Today Carter is well remembered for his promotion of solar energy. Carter championed solar power. He had installed 32 solar panels on the roof of the White House.

The Sad Fate of Jimmy Carter's Solar Panels.
The Sad Fate of Jimmy Carter's Solar Panels.
(Image by io9 We Came From the Future)
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David is a columnist writing on foreign affairs, economic, and political and social issues. He is an Associate Editor of The Greanville Post. His articles have been published by OpEdNews, The Real News Network, Truth Out, Consortium News, (more...)

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