In addressing the Gulf Coast Disaster, President Obama talked about the need for clean energy to eventually replace fossil fuels. In my opinion, that was the best part of the speech. There is much left unresolved. Outside of naming a commission, what will happen with the clean-up efforts? Will the regulations be mere slaps on the wrist, or will BP and other oil companies still proceed relatively unchecked? How will the country deal with the long term effects of this spill? If the major oil companies admit that they are not capable of cleaning up in the event of a catastrophe, then doesn’t that make the case for a move away from fossil fuels right there?
If we want to be real about it, then it has to be said that what stands in the way of clean energy is Big Oil. If no funds are available for research and development for solar, geothermal, and wind energy, then fossil fuels will remain the standard. As long as the oil barons have no viable challengers for energy, then we will never get “Beyond Petroleum”