After health care reform, the next big fight in Washington will be about energy. Spending on health care is now about 18 percent of gross domestic product, while energy spending is about 10 percent — both in the trillions of dollars, which used to be a lot of money.
There are several driving factors contributing to this urgency for energy reform. Speedy spending on shovel-ready energy infrastructure can help jump-start our declining economy — $43 billion of stimulus spending has been earmarked for energy. Current world energy resources, especially oil, are getting expensive, running out, and in the hands of people who want to kill us. Catastrophic global warming is accelerating because of carbon dioxide released into Earth’s atmosphere by the burning of coal and oil, and it’s probably already too late to save life, as we know it. President Obama’s political honeymoon will soon be over, so it’s now or never.