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SOCIAL ACTIVISM

From the inception of the Fossil Fuel economy in America, there have been government subsidies in place that ensure its monopoly status. Chief among these is the Oil Depletion Allowance, a program of tax immunity for petroleum producers which, in some cases, grants these corporations a 100% exemption from taxes on income generated.

The oil companies' justification for this extreme benefit is the most direct argument against it. That is: Oil is an inherently limited resource that requires inordinate capital investment to secure new sources as consumption depletes reserves. The ultimate implication of this natural fact is that oil will one day be economically infeasible to obtain on the scale it is today. Another way of saying this is that the condition of 'Peak Oil' was foreseen over 100-years ago and is a result of the diminishing returns inherent to this industry.

The unparalleled consolidation of oil profits is a necessary consequence of an industry whose life-span is finite. It is a fair assumption that the oil barons view themselves as the stewards of our energy future, and plan to be in control of the next generation of energy technologies once oil has gone out of fashion. (See: healthandenergy.com/new_petroleum.htm.) Whereas, it is incumbent upon the people to disabuse them of this notion by calling for a redirection of subsidies towards New Energy.

The Oil Depletion Allowance is the key subsidy that must be redirected into New Energy developments. Surely, existing energy firms will be eager to have the first opportunity to apply the resulting abundance of finances toward a New Energy economy. However, should they be unable to persuade a refereed public body that their plans will progressively engender first a transitional, and then a fully renewable energy economy, these funds should be directed to others.

We call for those supportive of the Movement to project how much of an infusion of capital this would bring annually to New Energy. Forearmed with such data, we can make a case for the immediate reallocation of this critical subsidy in the service of a New Energy future.

Another fundamental step on the road to sustainable society is the adoption of Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) at the local level. (See: ucsusa.org/clean_energy ---and--- newrules.org/electricity/rpsca.html ---and--- energyjustice.net/rps/)

We can all take action as advocates within our communities, if only by attending City Council meetings and proposing the adoption of RPS. There are other evolutionary economic models, not specifically related to energy, that may also assist the transformation toward sustainability. (See Resources: http://www.Solari.com)

The key is to act. Act with a fearless certainty that it is time for change, and that the alternatives are vastly superior to the status quo.