Global environmental challenges
A coalition of environmentalists, national security advocates and budget hawks on Tuesday called for an “oil security fee” and deployment of new transportation technology to lessen dependence on imported oil and to promote “mobility choice.”
“Oil’s virtual monopoly over transportation fuel coupled with limited economical and convenient alternatives for moving people and goods have made oil a strategic commodity and the lifeblood of the domestic and global economies,” stated a report released by the coalition, called Mobility Choice. “Choice involves both having a range of fuels to power the passenger fleet and having alternative options to driving to accomplish our daily rounds.”
The group called for an “oil security fee” on gasoline and diesel to reflect the true cost of securing oil supplies as well as policies to promote more efficient mass transportation, telecommuting and mixed use residential development.
“We’re not paying the security price of oil at the pump,” Anne Korin, co-director of the Institute for the Analysis of Global Security, a Washington, D.C. non-profit, said during a press conference Tuesday. “It’s important to internalize that cost with an oil security fee either at the pump or upstream.”
When Al Gore challenged the U.S. to produce all of its electricity from renewable sources in 10 years, his aggressive plan to combat climate change was pitted against another recently-unveiled proposal, from Texas billionaire T. Boone Pickens, to reduce the nation’s dependence on foreign oil.
Gore, a former Democratic vice president and Nobel Prize-winning crusader on climate change, announced his plan last week and has since promoted it on U.S. television. Expected to cost between $1.5 trillion and $3 trillion, Gore advocates investment in wind, solar and geothermal energy, energy efficiency and a national power grid. He also wants to retain energy production from nuclear and hydroelectric power plants, and invest in technology to store and capture carbon dioxide from coal and gas.