Chicago Sun-Times

Would Expensive Gas Help Us?

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Evanston engineer and journalist Christopher Steiner's new book imagines life when gas is $20 per gallon -- and his take his optimistic. He foresees cleaner air, more local produce and more local jobs. See the article here.

What do you think? Will weaning ourselves from cheap oil be better for us, or too painful to contemplate?

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3 Comments

I don't think it would help per se, but it is certainly something that will be A LOT less painful if we prepare for it now, as opposed to waiting until we are forced to switch to a less oil consuming lifestyle at a later (soon) date.

I like the convience of lifestyle that cheap oil provides us, but the simple fact is there is a finite amount of oil in existance and we've gone through more than we've got left. Even if we somehow drilled and refined every drop of oil from the earth, we are still facing increasing demand and consumption that means we'll very likely run out in our children's lifetime (if we're lucky...) Once that happens, it won't matter if oil is $20 dollars or $200 dollars there won't be enough to go around at any price.

At the root, it's not about how much we drill, or whether global climate change is happening, or about how much profit big oil is making. All those things are merely distractions to the fact that we're going to have to face soon, namely that the oil age is coming to a close. Personally, I'd rather work on ways to adapt to that future reality now, so that the systems needed to cope are in place before crisis hits.

Mary....you pay $20 a gallon for gas. I'm sure that will help you conserve, as you will have money for little else. Your liberal heart will feel better though I'm sure, knowing that you're doing your part to conserve fossil fuels. As for me, I have a family, and I need my money for other things, like food and shelter.

I'm for drilling in Alaska. It's crazy that we have the oil but wont help ourselves to it. If I was President, drilling in Alaska would be part of my economic stimulus plan. This would be real production, creating real taxes, and would really help this economy, but maybe that just makes too much sense for politicians to promote it? The policy just isn't self destructive enough to get passed in today's Congress, borrowing ourselves into a debtor's prison and printing dollars into hyperinflation just makes more sense to them.

Mary..... You pay $20 a gallon for gas. I'm sure that will soothe your conscience and make you feel better about saving the planet. As for me, I'm for drilling in Alaska and still paying $2.60 a gallon. I need my money for other things in life, like food and shelter.

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