The following is an excerpt from an article posted by James Greenberger:
"In his acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention, Mitt
Romney referred to his plan for the United States to achieve energy
independence by 2020. That plan is explained in a little more detail in
a document entitled “A Romney Plan for A Stronger Middle Class: Energy Independence”, which was released earlier this week by the Romney-Ryan campaign.
it is realistic to assume that energy independence can be achieved by
2020 is beyond the scope of this column. Nevertheless, the Romney-Ryan
plan makes for an interesting read. While the plan proposes to support a
wide range of energy production—petroleum, gas, coal, and even
renewables—its promise of energy independence centers on the purported
existence of large quantities of economically recoverable domestic
petroleum and the assumption that a lot more economically recoverable
domestic petroleum will soon be discovered.
Energy independence is
a laudable goal, even if based on large increases in domestic petroleum
production. Although its allegedly favorable impact on gasoline prices
is oversold, increasing the domestic production of liquid hydrocarbons
would make U.S. energy supplies more secure, improve our balance of
trade, and create significant additional domestic employment.
Electricity storage technology, deployed in automotive and
grid-supporting applications, is certainly part of the long term
solution. Funding the necessary development and deployment of that
technology during a period of relative petroleum abundance will be
difficult for the private sector to do alone. We should watch with
interest what the two campaigns have to say about this issue in the
weeks ahead and not allow the country to be lulled into complacency by
promises from either campaign of a short term fix."
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