Have you ever Googled, ‘alternative or renewable energy solutions,’ and only found articles on companies funded by the government and what they are currently working on?
Even on the actual U.S. Department of Energy website, there doesn’t seem to be any solid planning. The U.S. is famous for being a capitalist country, but we consistently fall short of our more technologically advanced counterparts when it comes to actually mainstreaming our newest technologies. And that goes for the renewable energy industry as well.
With all these new technologies being created, what this country should really be working on is how to implement them. The U.S. is projected to have only implemented about 5% of currently existing renewable/alternative energy technologies by the year 2035.
Some current articles state that the U.S. will be pushed to implement new energy technology more quickly due to exponentially growing energy needs, and dwindling oil supplies. It is a tried and true fact that people eventually get their act together when faced with a state of crisis. But why wait for the crisis to come when you can meet the problem head on?
Across the board, the current world leaders in the implementation of renewable technologies and policies are China and Germany, but many developing countries and European countries are quickly rising. The U.S. is only leading in two technologies; hydroelectricity and solar power. So what is it these countries are doing differently? Why is the U.S. not entering the clean energy future as quickly as our fellow nations? We are recognizing the problem(s), coming up with solutions, researching and developing these solutions, but we are missing a huge piece of the puzzle—a piece that everyone else seems to have—and that is policy.
What makes our country so great and amazing is also our downfall when it comes to implementing new legislation: our many branches of government. Everyone is allowed to have a say in what happens and accept or dismiss the ideas of others. With small countries such as Germany or South Korea there are fewer politicians to debate new policies so they are approved by a majority faster. China however is also able to pass legislation due to their single party socialist republic. But in the United States, a nation-wide energy policy would need to be approved by the senate, and the house of representatives, who then send it up to the president. Sadly, none of these folks can agree on what, how, or when new energy policy should be implemented, and many of them are distracted by existing energy lobbies and concerns (ie: OIL, coal, & natural gas).
Time is running out! If the U.S. is not able to quicken the process and pass policies to back development of new energy technologies and policy, we will not only fall behind the rest of the world, but will be unprepared for an energy future where oil is no longer the most cost effective option. Our tax dollars are already being used to research, develop, and build new, alternative and/or renewable energy technologies—let’s not let our taxes go to waste! The time is now to invest in implementing new, clean energy solutions in America.