The United States Requires an Energy Technology Strategy

Photo Credit: Stephen Rahn

Richard Rosenzweig

The Trump Administration’s energy and climate policies are evolving although few specifics have been proposed to date. Let’s focus on what we do know: The Administration has stated its intent to stimulate increased production and consumption of fossil fuels through policies typically supported by Republicans. In general, these fuels contribute to public health and air quality problems and climate change. The Administration has not made specific proposals on how it intends to maintain or expand the use of nuclear power, develop technologies to enable the use of coal in the power sector in an environmentally acceptable fashion, or continue the progress made to increase the use of renewables and improve energy efficiency. We also don’t have an answer on how President Trump intends to deal with the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

Energy and environmental policies have significant impacts on national security and our economic and environmental health. They are also extremely contentious. In prior times, when Washington was not as partisan, the debate over such policies focused primarily on their impacts on regional economies and fuel markets. At present, they are amongst the most partisan issues that policy-makers grapple with. This is the case even though many would agree that the goal of energy policies should be to ensure adequate, reliable, affordable supplies to enhance national security and support economic growth while protecting the environment and public health. The Administration’s proposals to relax certain rules primarily impact fossil fuel production and are targeted to benefit certain regions of the country. But they will not lead to the continued development and deployment of non-emitting technologies, which create new economic opportunities while protecting public health and the environment.

 
Read more from the Huffington Post.

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