Thursday, March 5, 2009

Nogginthought About Alternative Energies

Wow, energy is a hot topic these days. It appears that cap and trade is a shoe-in and that our nation's efforts will move more and more toward finding alternative ways to power our buildings.

But despite the hype and the seemingly clear path away from carbon based fuels, there are still some doubters.

In today's Wall Street Journal, Robert Bryce, managing editor of Energy Tribune points out what a small drop in the bucket(or should I say barrel) solar and wind power will make toward reducing our use of fossil fuels.

27.7 million barrels of oil were not consumed during 2008 thanks to the use of solar and wind. Problem is, he points out, that America uses the equivalent of 17,301 million barrels of oil worth of energy per year. That makes solar and wind quite a small contributor to the solution of our energy problems.

His conclusion is that hydrocarbons won't go away anytime soon and that the politicians need to admit that fact.

I'd have to agree with him. Politicians do things for power. And rallying against hydrocarbons is a politically popular thing to do.

Now, I don't propose to have all the answers, frankly I believe all politicians are cut from the same cloth, but I do think about this stuff.

The one thing that stood out in Robert Bryce's opinion piece is that he, in fact, has a solar array on the roof of his home that provides about a third of the power his family uses.

And that's where my Nogginthoughts begin. A Nogginhaus is a thinking house. And just like a thinking person is an independent one, so too will a Nogginhaus be an independent house. Sure, the nation needs to reduce it's dependence on foreign oil, blah, blah, blah. But we also need to reduce our dependence on the government 'doing something' to solve our problems.

Gas companies, electric companies, and water companies are all utilities that are fingers of the hand of government. And while all this talk revolves around solving the energy problems through various means, it is the individual who will pay for it.

Think now about how your home can be independent and then let the government do what it will do anyway - no matter what you think.

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