A contribution to our dialogue on energy choices
1 U.S. Bureau of Land Management (retired)
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The United States and much of the rest of the world must imminently achieve dramatic changes in energy production and consumption. This is driven primarily by the need to limit greenhouse gas production, principally CO2 (U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, 2009; Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [IPCC], 2007), and by constraints on oil supplies. A near-complete transition to new and renewable sources is clearly necessary; however, this may take several decades to achieve. We must also use our current energy sources wisely, with regard to both effective utilization and environmental constraints. Our decisions must be considered carefully, because they will be far reaching.
Manuscript recieved 28 Feb. 2010; accepted 30 Apr. 2010