June 11, 2007 – Vol.12 No.12
FILM REVIEW: ENERGY CROSSROADS.
There’s nothing in our current version of free-market capitalism that deals with the depletion of resources. Nor is there anything that copes with a major and irreparable environmental disaster. It’s time we figured out a new paradigm for our economy before it’s too late.
These are the major themes of the film Energy Crossroads, available on DVD.
For a century or so we’ve built a nation of sprawling suburbs without any other method of transportation to and from them other than the fossil fueled automobile. We’ve made the assumption that fuel to drive those vehicles would be available forever and at low cost. We’re already seeing immense sacrifice, particularly the ultimate sacrifice (people’s lives) in order to insure the continued flow of fuel to keep the nation humming.
(The war in Iraq may not have been for the oil, but it certainly is because of it. We put Saddam in power to keep the region and America’s interests (the oil) stable. Now we can’t leave Iraq for fear that violence will spread and thus disrupt oil supplies to us and the rest of the world.)
Though we’ve had a few major, though brief, oil shocks we’ve done nothing to prepare for the day when oil is no longer available at prices consumers can afford. Our economic system says that we should always be growing. Growth is good, business and economic leaders say. But growth requires an ever-increasing supply of resources which, quite simply, may not always be available on the planet in the quantities we need for current levels of consumption, let alone for continued growth.
Then there’s the grandaddy of environmental disasters: global warming. Aside from economic cost of increased drought and severe weather, who’s to pay for property permanently lost to rising oceans? Property lost is just as likely to be beaches or marshlands as it is the streets and the high rises of Miami.
The continued debate over global warming is not whether it is happening, it’s over what has caused it, man or natural cycles. The oceans are already rising regardless of the root cause.
You’ve probably seen Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth. Or perhaps you’ve seen Who Killed the Electric Car. Now you should put Energy Crossroads on your list.
While An Inconvenient Truth delves into global warming and its cause but offers few solutions and Who Killed the Electric Car? looks into a solution for air pollution, global warming and diminishing oil supplies and questions why a solution met its demise, Energy Crossroads considers causes and specific solutions - energy efficiency, renewables, green homes and sustainable business operations. Among its examples is a Colorado brewery that blends green business with good beer.
The film returns frequently to a common and frightening theme: If we don’t make a change in our fossil-fuel-dependant economic paradigm soon our economy could suffer horribly, possibly leading to the nation’s demise.
Energy Crossroads, A Burning Need to Change Course, was produced by Tiroir A Films. Learn more at http://www.energyxroads.com/
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