Improving America’s Energy Market

To preface, I am a huge advocate for renewable, sustainable energy supply solutions. The idea to reduce our carbon footprint and create a cleaner more sustainable energy market is noble. But as it currently stands the US relies upon fossil fuels for 61% of it’s electricity production. Renewable energy at its current state is nowhere near ready to replace fossil fuels.  While battery production is essential, where energy is sourced from is of major concern here in the US. It is not east to transition from a fossil fuels to renewables so how we plan to do should be seriously discussed.

Battery production and EV manufacturing has taken a massive jump forward the past decade but we are not directly addressing the problem. This being that how we generate our energy is just as important, if not more so, than how we store and distribute it. Minimizing our carbon foot print is the goal. Even though battery technology has increased 10x, if we are storing those batteries with electricity generated by fossil fuels we obviously aren’t fixing the problem. 

There are a few ways that the US could shift its economy from a carbon producer to a carbon reducer. The current strategy of shutting down all fossil fuel production while green energy is still in its infancy is probably one of the worst ones. Eliminating production here in the States has given countries like Russia and China leverage in energy markets and US consumers have had to pay that price at the gas pump and with inflation. This strategy also does not convince people who are in the oil industry to change, on the contrary it forces them to fight. It is important to be empathetic to people that feed their families producing fossil fuels. An economic shift of this magnitude is going to displace many things and not losing sight of that will help you win minds in this persuasion game.  

A better course of action would be to incentivize ALL types of energy production domestically. The more energy the United States produces to fuel itself and world the better. Opening the flood gates of energy production will help EVERYBODY. When energy is available cheaply all other goods become cheaper because production, transportation and storage now all cost less. (Side note: this is how you beat inflation too.)

 Now the key is to incentivizes people and companies to want to build green energy generating infrastructure. Currently the EPA has a laundry list of regulations applied to domestic energy production which can be seen here . Obviously fossil fuel giants like Exxon and Shell don’t love these restrictions so what if the government used this as leverage. For example, if a plan was put in place for these corporations to develop 10 GW of green energy generating infrastructure than SOME of the restrictions on its fossil fuel production can be lessened. This compromise is a win-win for all. We are incentivizing green energy production and we are no longer fighting big oil (fights are time and energy consuming and not the best way to create change) but persuading them to build green infrastructure and transition with the times not against them. The long term goal is to build up green energy and SLOWLY move away from fossil fuels. Making this transition quickly has had terrible consequences which endanger the goal at hand of limiting the carbon foot print. 

In order to create a decarbonized world we need to be patient and compromising. The current course of action has not directly tackled the problem and a better plan is needed desperately. Battery production has been incredible and should not stop but renewable generation needs to take the next step if we want to make “Going Green”  a reality. 



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