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The Federal Government's Effect On Renewable Energy In The United States

4386 words - 18 pages

The Federal Government's Effect on Renewable Energy in the United States

In an article posted by Reuters on October 24, 2006, the global conservation group, formerly known as the WWF, stated that “humans are stripping nature at an unprecedented rate and will need two planets' worth of natural resources every year by 2050 on current trends” (Blanchard). The report indicates that, if every other country were to use the same amount of energy as America does, five planets worth of resources would be needed to support the world. America, as one of the largest consumer countries of energy, has been making attempts to implement methods for using alternate energy sources in order to preserve the already dwindling resources of its environment. Although many advances have been made in alternate and renewable energy research, one major factor appears to stand in the way of its development: the federal budget. President George W. Bush and his administration have been making budget cuts in solar and other renewable energy programs due to the programs’ lack of popularity in the marketplace and little success in research and developmental advancements throughout the years. However, many advocate groups for the use of renewable energy blame the field’s slow advancement on the lack of funding it is being allotted by the federal government. Without interest, the government will not increase funding, but without funding, the opportunity for interest to expand is minimal. The question of why the federal government has allowed outside interest groups to play an influential role on the decisions it makes regarding the nation’s environmental well being comes into play, as the American public’s national opinion continues to be overlooked.

When approached about the issue of global warming and its effects on the nation, most Americans would agree that it is indeed an issue and something should be done to fix it (Skylar and Sheinkopf). However, very few realize the urgency in dramatically improving our living conditions in order to preserve the resources that are diminishing in front of our eyes. In the early 1990s, scientific researchers began recognizing the shifting experienced in global climate change. Upon acknowledging the fact that global warming did exist, scientists sought after ways to alleviate this developing social problem. In order to use sources already existing in our environment, alternative energy resources, such as solar energy, have come to the forefront in solutions. The implementation of technologies that use solar energy, that is any form of energy radiated by the sun, date back to A.D. 100 when Northern Italian summer homes with windowed rooms were constructed using thin sheets of mica or selenite (Skylar and Sheinkopf 7). From that time forward, inventors have created ways in which solar energy can be used to fuel our daily lives. Innovations in solar water heating, solar pool heating, solar electricity, and even...

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