I have been accused of being one of those liberal touchy-feely characters because I support government action to confront global warming. Critics charge if anything is done to deal with the energy crisis it means we will be forced to live in log cabins and use candle power. So, here are a few suggestions to avoid living in log cabins.
1. A massive Marshall Plan(in 1948, the American Marshall Plan helped devastated European nations recover) to dramatically improve mass transportation systems in large cities. For example, in the New York City area have suburban train systems, like the Long Island Railroad, run trains every ten minutes. Subsidize train fares. After all, we subsidize farmers.
2. A high speed train system crisscrossing the nation. Subsidized fares.
3. Require all cars to have at least 40 mpg. Allow five years for those with cars not matching that standard to get rid of their car.
4. Since trucks get lower mpg, fund a research program to improve truck fuel efficiency. I refuse to believe a nation that set men on the moon is incapable of solving this problem.
5. Wind farms all across the nation. Sorry, environmentalists who complain about the scenery, but this takes precedence over what looks nice.
6. Use of sea power.
7. Solar panels where feasible.
8. Improve efficiency of windows in homes to be more energy effective.
9. Ban single passenger cars from entering major cities during rush hours.
10. Improve efficiency of light bulbs.
11. Rethink use of nuclear energy.
12. Add bus lanes to interstate highways.
13. Establish a $10 billion fund to reward new ideas in energy efficiency.
Here is my baker’s dozen to begin the dialogue. I suspect there are at least fifty other ideas that could be done. Will this ideas, reduce “freedom?” Probably, if one defines “freedom” as the right to destroy the earth. Just remember, until invention of automobile there were no speeding laws in America. The introduction of such laws undoubtedly took away the “freedom” of some people.
Will my ideas cost money? Absolutely. In World War II, the paramount issue was winning the war. Tax rates were as high as 50% on many incomes. We had food and gas rationing because Americans regarded victory as more important than selfishness.