In the last year, renewables have been booming, according to recent reports. But due to the recession, electricity demand isn’t increasing as much as anticipated, and experts say that could translate into lower demand for all new sources of electricity, including renewables. On top of that, President Obama recently told Democrats that “we’re not going to be able to ramp up solar and wind to suddenly replace every other energy source anytime soon, and the economy still needs to grow. So we’ve got to look at how to make existing technologies and options better.” And in his State of the Union address, Obama threw his weight behind nuclear energy and offshore drilling.
For the immediate future, how can renewable sources of electricity position themselves to become the top energy source? How should Congress balance emerging technologies with existing ones? Is it wise for Obama to pour resources into adapting traditional technologies, like clean coal, or should he focus more on wind, solar and other renewable sources of energy?
Here’s a little tease of the two responses from opposing sides. Go to the National Journal article to read each complete response from Mr. O’Keefe and Mr. Hay:
FEBRUARY 8, 2010 8:43 AM
Don’t Follow The Yellow Brick Road
CEO, George C. Marshall Institute
The current promise of renewables is founded in fantasy: a glittering yellow brick road that leads to nowhere. This is a harsh indictment but also an accurate one.
FEBRUARY 8, 2010 8:40 AM
U.S. Not Serious About Renewables
By Lewis Hay
Chairman and CEO, FPL Group
As the CEO of America’s largest provider of renewable energy, I obviously have a bias on this topic, but in my view we are simply not serious about building a robust renewable energy industry in the United States.