Expanding Renewable Energy Policy & Domestic Production

U.S. expanded renewable energy policy and domestic production
An energy policy that increases the domestic production of renewable energy is a major option for the United States in addressing energy needs. Despite its considerable benefits, such a policy has possible negative effects on the country. (Photo: Public Domain)

The energy policy of the United States involves a combination of oil and petroleum products, coal, nuclear energy and renewable sources. Increasingly, the energy demand of the country puts this energy policy to the test. Increasing energy demand requires higher energy generation to ensure the stability of the power grid. Consequently, the stability of the economy is affected. Issues in oil supply in the world market also compel the government to look into the energy policy to examine potential changes to address such issues. Further, issues concerning safety and security of energy production facilities push the government and interest groups to reexamine the energy policy.

This article shows that the U.S. should pursue an energy policy of increasing renewable energy involving an expansion of domestic production.

Criticisms against an Expanded Renewable Energy Policy

Critics argue that the increased use of renewable energy can lead to a sudden rise in costs of energy production. Current technologies for renewable energy production can only be properly implemented with very high costs. High costs are involved in developing the technology. The expanded use of renewable energy could also reduce jobs in the energy industry, particularly in companies that operate using oil, petroleum or coal as the main source of the energy.

There are also concerns about the potential impact of an expanded renewable energy policy on the economy. For instance, higher costs of renewable energy could lead to higher costs of doing business in the United States. This condition could push businesses out of the country. Firms might further transfer to other countries where energy costs are lower.

Support for an Expanded Renewable Energy Policy

Renewable energy presents long-term opportunities for the U.S. economy to grow. These opportunities are not just in terms of the generation of new jobs in the energy sector, but also in terms of the leadership of the U.S. in developing and using new technologies for harnessing renewable sources of energy. The United States could become a world leader in renewable energy production that other countries could get technologies from. This condition presents economic opportunities where the United States could profit from the sale of these technologies.

An expanded renewable energy policy provides greater opportunities for the U.S. to become less dependent on oil from other countries. Currently, the United States imports oil and is easily under the influence of changes in oil prices in the world market. Oil prices will continue to rise because of scarcity of oil reserves worldwide.

An expanded renewable energy policy involving increased domestic production of renewable energy also benefits natural resources in America. In the long term, such an energy policy allows better protection and stability of the country’s natural resources because of reduced pollution and other negative environmental impacts.

Conclusion

The energy policy of the United States addresses current and past energy needs. However, at present, energy demand and safety and security concerns require a different approach or a change in the energy policy. Reform of the energy policy to increase the use of renewable energy presents a welcome approach that addresses many of the issues and concerns in today’s energy production landscape. The benefits of expanding domestic production of renewable energy presents greater opportunities for the United States to improve its energy situation and provide jobs in the renewable energy sector. Increasing the use of renewable energy presents greater ability for the United States to conserve the natural environment. Therefore, the United States must pursue a policy of increasing renewable energy, involving an expansion of domestic production.

References
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  • National Renewable Energy Laboratory (2015). Energy analysis: Policy Analysis.
  • Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (2015). Energy efficiency and renewable energy science and technology policy fellowships.
  • The White House (2015). Advancing American Energy.
  • The White House (2015). Energy, Climate Change, and Our Environment.
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (2015). Renewable Energy.
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