I read this article recently in Forbes magazine and found it a bit disturbing.Here's the first paragraph:
"If you think runaway oil prices are upsetting, just wait for what's in store for electricity. Similar forces are in play. Demand is rising fast; supply is not. The cost to get coal and natural gas out of the ground is going up, and to that expense must be added the cost of the carbon permits that Congress and the presidential candidates are contemplating. Environmentalists are getting power plants scotched. China is sucking up energy. Leave such dynamics in play long enough, and price spikes in electricity follow. But that's just the beginning. We may be facing brownouts (voltage reductions) and even rolling blackouts. By as early as next year our demand for electricity will exceed reliable supply in New England, Texas and the West and, by 2011, in New York and the mid-Atlantic region."
This is troubling and it has me seriously considering solar panels for my house. Now, before you go off and start calling me GreenManMike, let it be known that I am not trying to reduce my carbon footprint or some such nonsense. It is merely to keep the lights on. Indeed, my take on the whole thing is that there are several major government-made reasons this is going to become our reality:
- The environmentalists (and, thus, the Democrats) won't let us build any nuclear power plants
- They also won't let us drill for natural gas offshore
- They also won't let us keep our coal plants running
Notice, I'm not bringing ANWR into this. While I do think we should be allowed to drill there, that does not effect my electricity.
Also note that I am not, in fact, anti-environment. I am all for responsible environmentalism. Unfortunately, the "responsible" part has left common discourse. There are all sorts of arguments to made here (granted, on both sides of the equation) that are not worth going into now. But suffice to say, I am considering solar.
Oh, and I actually bought a backpack today so that I can ride my bike to the bus station tomorrow (briefcase and bike don't mix).