kirtu wrote:mañjughoṣamaṇi wrote:Ironically, it is the US's political stance with regard to both energy needs and greenhouse gas emissions to hold out for a technological solution that will fix the problems. The European nations you mentioned have all sought to reduce fuel consumption by choosing not to subsidize gasoline, and to utilize high fuel taxes as a coercive measure to limit fuel consumption.
This was so promising ....
but then ....Likewise they've accepted the need to reduce emissions rather than wait for higher efficiency technologies.
Well that's one way of looking at it.
It is apparently the way that many of the European industrial nations looked at it when they cited it as the reason for embracing the Kyoto Accord. This does not mean they haven't pursued more efficient energy sources, but it does mean they realized that holding out for technological solution that still hadn't manifested was insufficient. This is contra the US position which officially argued that regulation and restriction of fossil fuel use stifled business, subsequently stifling technological innovation which is supposedly the way out of dependence on fossil fuels and the increased emissions that come with them. This faith in business and technology has even been part of the justification used to push the fracking debacle.
America is stuck in Can't-Do but will likely play catch up after the demo technologies have been proven by others. And that unfortunately is one of the lesser lauded historic patterns that the US follows.
I don't think this catch phrase is very accurate. America is huge, and there are a lot of opinions floating around here touching on everything from the utopian technologist, to advocates of strong regulation, to greed overwhelming concern, to people not giving a shit for whatever reason (preoccupation with lowering standard of living, the loss of political power for those outside of the moneyed class, religious belief, etc).
With regard to your answer that Europe with develop more hybrid vehicles, Japan and America are the leaders in that field if one looks at development, production, and purchases of those vehicles. I for one hope that Europeans don't increase car ownership levels as that can lead to urban planning nightmares and habitat destruction.