December 30, 2011
Los Angeles: Craig Shields, editor of 2GreenEnergy.com and author of the report, notes: When I first looked at this data, I laughed and said to myself, "Well, the good news is that it won't take much time to write this report. The bad news is that the government must take a role here, but it can't be trusted to do this fairly, honestly, or effectively. We're screwed. But the more I looked into the data, the more I realized that perhaps my first impression was an oversimplification. There is truly rich material here."
How many people trust government to act rightly? Isn't this why investors are active in Europe, Asia, Africa, South America, but not in the U.S? - Craig Shields
2GreenEnergy.com has released another in its ongoing series of reports on surveys conducted of clean energy businesspeople, this one examining the proper role of government in forwarding renewables.
The report offers insight into the following:
• Will market forces point the way to the right energy policy?
• Should government support the development of clean energy technologies, offering incentives, and participating in public-private partnerships?
• Under what circumstances can government be trusted to make correct, fair-minded decisions?
Shields goes on: “Many survey participants believe that free-market capitalism won’t get the job done. But I’m not sure what they’re suggesting makes sense either. That’s why this subject is so interesting and exciting. It’s true that government must take action to implement sound energy policies as servants of the public welfare. And it’s true that the corporate objective is about creating value for its shareholders in a global economy, not what is in the best interest of the citizenry of the nation. But how many people trust government to act rightly? Isn’t this why investors are active in Europe, Asia, Africa, South America, but not in the U.S?”
Some suggest that a carbon tax will create a level playing field. But again, will this really happen in a world that still subsidized the hugely profitable oil and coal companies? We’re anxious for a day when carbon fuel suppliers pay the full cost of the damage they do to our health and the environment, but should we be holding our breath? And what about government’s role in stimulating and funding research?
“I was impressed with the number of people who spoke to the need to improve government and remove corruption,” says Shields. “As one guy put it: ‘Government has a very large and necessary role to play, but only after it has been returned into the hands of the people – real flesh and blood persons. This will happen only when the power of money is removed from the political arena. Then our leadership will be something more than groveling cowardice and ravenous greed.’”
Yet not everyone sees it this way. Readers may be surprised to learn how many people made remarks like this: “Government does virtually nothing well and has no business picking winners and losers in any way, in any industry, in any business, at any time, for any reason.”
The full report, a robust set of contrasting viewpoints, is available here at no charge:
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