The US senate passed a break through energy bill. The bill proposes to raise gas mileage standards for the first time in 20 years and fund research n alternative energy sources. The government is advocating new measures to soothe growing public concern over rising prices at the pumps.
The cost of oil was at a record level with gasoline prices hovering around $3 a gallon.
President George W. Bush recommended pushing back deadlines for the transition to cleaner gasoline additives such as ethanol, ramping up the number of oil refineries built and temporarily halting oil shipments into the nation's petroleum reserve.
Each of these recommendations is aimed at making more alternative energy available to consumers.
Meanwhile, in the Senate, Republicans are advocating $100 rebate checks for citizens to help with the high cost of gas, and one Democrat is proposing a 60-day gasoline tax "holiday."
These are temporary fixes, analysts say, for an oil shortage which, like the 1973 oil crisis, is triggered more by politics and economics than a natural paucity of global reserves or an inability to extract and produce new oil.
But many scientists warn that there will come a day when rising oil prices will not be due to political or economic pressures, but because a natural peak in global oil production will have been reached.
Once we reach this tipping point, known as "Hubbert's Peak," also known as "peak oil," global oil production will begin an irreversible decline and less oil will be available with every passing year, scientists say.
Energy experts no longer debate about whether Hubbert's peak will occur, but when.
So now the focus is shifting from reliance on fossil fuels and foreign oil toward renewable fuels and green technology. A new survey showed that Americans prefer energy conservation over more production, and that a large majority also favPage: 1 2 3 Related medicine news :1
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