Connect! Unite! Act! We can be leaders in renewable energy



I’m always amazed when we talk about dollars and cents versus existence, or when we twist numbers in order to make a case we are so desperate to control. The global oil and gas industry receives almost $6 trillion dollars in tax incentives, benefits, and public support, according to the IMF. In the U.S., tax benefits provided for oil and gas are more than sevenfold greater than renewable energy. If you ask the oil and gas world, though, the problem is that every time there is any benefit provided to anyone that isn’t them, the sky is going to fall.

Republicans are so desperate to combat solar and wind that they will rely on some of the worst of all possible witnesses.


There are some truths that we just don’t want to think about, however, because it upsets our reality. Throughout my entire life, everyone around us has relied on exchanging pieces of paper and coins or checks and credit cards representing funds for goods and services. Currency has been a great tool for not just the creation of wealth but a way to reward work and to stimulate growth. 

There are, however, times where the amount of money you have and the amount of money available simply does not matter. Money will be of no value to you when you are deceased. Period. You can pass it off to family, sure. If you are terrified because you are caught in a hurricane, a tornado, or without power, burning cash or having a wallet full of funds does not always help. If you are worried about the world your child will live in, and the world of their children, then money is rarely the long-term solution. A child or a grandchild can lose the funds in numerous ways from a bad business investment to untimely death or extreme health care cost. That’s the world today.

If your end goal is to make the world a bit better for your progeny, other items beyond money start to come into focus. Families leave behind heirlooms or family histories. For some it is a fight for a better world. Civil rights. The right for women to vote or to have power over their own lives. Scientists see discovery and invention that changes human life now and in the future.

Innovators are often treated fairly poorly. “Poorly” might even be too kind. The status quo has a tendency to push back and reject a lot of attempts to innovate in the marketplace. Even when we adopt changes, sometimes it’s the person or company creating the change that takes time. After all, WD-40 isn’t just a cool name—it was the 40th attempt, meaning the first 39 tries? Failures.

As renewable energy continues to grow and build, it improves in every single generation. The way in which we capture and store solar energy is vastly improved over earlier generations. Even the panel technology itself continues to evolve.

On the other hand, the most common method for getting at oil is the same as it has been for years, as is transporting it through pipelines, tankers, trucks, and railways.

So here are the variables: long-term and short-term investment. An environment we want to save. A type of life we want to provide to our children, and the commitment to achievement and excellence.

Community, I don’t have the answers. I do know the wrong answers, and I can tell you one of the wrong answers is refusing to consider any opportunity to harvest energy through less environmentally destructive means.

But what do I know.

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