miércoles, octubre 29, 2008

Obama: The New Apollo project

Obama: The New Apollo Project
An energy initiative that Albert Einstein would have approved
Alfredo Ascanio (askain)
Published 2008-10-29 15:28 (KST)

About 50 years ago Fairfield Osborn wrote a book called "Our Plundered Planet" and Albert Einstein said about this book: "Reading it one feels very keenly how futile most of our political quarrels are compared with the base realities of life."

Osborn noted with emphasis that: "The tide of the earth's population is rising; the reservoir of the earth's living resources is falling. There is only one solution: Man must recognize the necessity of cooperation with nature."

Today, during the presidential campaign, the project, which some have dubbed "Apollo," is set to cooperate with nature and promote renewable energy alternatives.

First off, decreasing the reliance on oil -- both foreign and domestic -- could start to redirect some of the money than the US spends every year.

With the election a week away, and most critical state polls heavily favoring the democratic candidate, let's use Barack Obama's alternative energy plan as a springboard.

Obama's plan is indeed an Apollo project for alternative energy. A sound project that would be enthusiastically approved of by Albert Einstein if he were alive.

Here's what Time Magazine (Election '08) had to say about his plan in relation to the current economic problems:
"He wants to launch an 'Apollo project' to build a new alternative-energy economy. His rationale for doing so includes some hard truths about the current economic mess: 'The engine of economic growth for the past 20 years is not going to be there for the next 20. That was consumer spending. Basically, we turbocharged this economy based on cheap credit.' But the days of easy credit are over, Obama said, 'because there is too much deleveraging taking place, too much debt.' A new economic turbocharger is going to have to be found, and "there is no better potential driver that pervades all aspects of our economy than a new energy economy ... That's going to be my No. 1 priority when I get into office."

So what exactly would an Apollo Project for energy look like?

According to the Apollo Alliance, which Obama supports, a rigorous program channeling $500 billion over 10 years to alternative energy projects is needed. That is about one-third of current spending in Iraq, and roughly half of what was just lent by the federal government to insurance giant AIG. That money would be dedicated to:

Generate clean power (25 percent from renewable sources by 2025)
Improve energy conservation and efficiency
Cut energy bills
Improve US technological and industrial capabilities
Create 5 million green jobs

Alfredo Ascanio is a professor of economics at Simon Bolivar University in Caracas, Venezuela
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