A while back, George W. Bush said the U.S. had a dangerous addiction to oil. (Madeline Albright said it too). The Center for American Progress just released a cool, interactive map(link here) showing just who we’re buying oil from to get our fix. It turns out drug addiction isn’t a bad analogy—to keep up with our habit, we’re funneling our money to unsavory “dealers,” the most unstable and hostile regimes around the world.
As CAP points out, though, there’s help—not a 12-step program, but just 5 steps! Here’s what they say (and we agree): “The good news is that we can transition to a low-carbon economy with tools that are already available to us.” They outline five key steps to “radically transform our security, economy, and environment”
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- Implement an economy-wide cap-and-trade program for greenhouse gases.
- Transform our transportation networks by increasing vehicle fuel efficiency, boosting the production and availability of low-carbon alternative fuels, and investing in a low-carbon transportation infrastructure.
- Overhaul our electricity industry by improving efficiency, increasing production and consumption of renewable energy, and promoting the use of “advanced coal” through carbon capture-and-storage systems.
- Require the federal government, coordinated by a new White House National Energy Council, to manage the energy transformation and structure its own operations to reduce global warming and create a low-carbon economy.
- Advance international global warming policies.
Anyone who’s quit coffee or cigarettes after counting up how much of their paycheck was going to pay for the habit might have a similar reaction to Sightline’s energy counter— it’s another illustration of the power of energy independence.
This map is a great reminder of the true sources of our habit. The CAP has outlined some solutions to get this monkey off our back. And Sightline has devoted plenty of brainpower—and ink—to smart solutions too. In the meantime, we’ll see you all at the next Energy-holics Anonymous meeting.
The map can be found here. Check it out: http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2008/05/oil_imports.html