Yes, that includes drilling for oil and building pipelines. It is no secret that most Americans still rely on oil to move themselves and their goods, and no amount of wishful thinking or government subsides is likely to change that any time soon. To that end, the report states;
Continuing to deliver inexpensive and reliable energy is going to require the United States to optimize all of its natural resources and construct pathways (pipelines, transmission and distribution) to deliver electricity and fuel.
To that end, the council recommended more opportunities for exploiting coal, natural gas, and oil resources on federal land. That will no doubt raise the ire of many environmentalists, as will the suggestion that the permit process be streamlined. But I think a little less bureaucracy could go a long way, and if we could first get off of foreign oil, we could turn our attention to diminishing oil use completely.
Another recommendation of the council is to look for ways to make transportation and electricity use more efficient.
We must reduce our overall energy dependence through bold and achievable efficiency gains. If we pursue this agenda creatively, we’ll not only save on energy costs, but also capture an opportunity to lead in emerging efficiency technologies, while creating tens of thousands of new jobs and reducing emissions.
To that end the council suggests that realtors work energy audits into the home buying process, and that industries work to streamline and limit their electricity use, while also encouraging the use of public transportation.
Finally, the council thinks a new series of tax credits and grants for research and development is needed, as well as a Clean Energy Agency to help start-ups gain financing and come into their own. No doubt such suggestions will be shot down be deficit hawks, and I don’t think anybody really expects anything to come of this Roadmap to Renewal. But at least they tried?