Nothing ever works out as planned. Just ask President Obama, who came into office equipped with an ambitious energy plan that addressed climate change and American dependence on foreign (read: Mideast) oil. Within two short years, a massive financial meltdown, an unprecedented offshore oil spill, and a GOP-controlled Congress has demolished that strategy, sending the administration back to the drawing board.
On Wednesday, Obama announced a reformulated energy plan that calls for a one-third decrease in oil imports by 2025. Abandoning the idea of a "comprehensive energy bill" (aka cap-and-trade), Obama is touting a new "clean energy standard," under which 80 percent of electricity in the U.S. would be generated from clean sources by 2035. To make that happen, we're going to have deal with our oil addiction (duh).
“The only way for America’s energy supply to be truly secure is by permanently reducing our dependence on oil,” he said. “We’re going to have to find ways to boost our efficiency so that we use less oil. We’ve got to discover and produce cleaner, renewable sources of energy that also produce less carbon pollution that is threatening our climate. And we have to do it quickly.”
For more, dig into NYT's in-depth special section on energy issues.
Photo: Edward Burtynsky