Angela Keane October 15, 2013
Michael Zimmer, Executive in Residence for Energy and the Environment for the Voinovich School's CE3, will be moderating the October 16 installment of the Renewable Energy Seminar & Teleconference Series commemorating the 40th anniversary of the oil embargo. This webinar, hosted by ACORE and ABA, will illustrate the advances in technology and policy made since the 1970s oil embargo and show how renewable energy is becoming a competitive as well as sustainable global building block for the 21st century.
The 1970s oil embargo was initiated by the oil-rich nations of the Middle East seeking to use oil as a political threat to the United States and other allied nations regarding their dealings with Israel. The incident inflicted increased prices of oil, oil shortages, and one of the worst recessions the United States had ever seen. The world price of oil increased over 400%. As a result, the United States has expanded and diversified its energy supply over the past 40 years to minimize and avoid similar disruptions.
By adding renewable energy, investing in efficiency, opening shale energy development, and expanding global alliances, the United States will this year become the leader in natural gas and oil production. According to Zimmer, "the future is bright" for renewable energy even though challenges lie ahead. "Industry needs to reach the scale to produce efficiently, lower costs with technology improvements, compete with a competitive market, remove artificial barriers in the marketplace, and have access to cheaper costs of capital in order to be efficient," Zimmer explained in an interview.
In order to learn from our mistakes, Zimmer advises, "We need to have an energy plan to be competitive, and we need to think more globally and protect our energy strategies constantly. We also need to encourage technology and new breakthroughs. We are a country driven by conveniences, and that [mindset] alone can have dire consequences."
As the moderator for this historic webinar, Zimmer will ensure the national audience gets many benefits out of the discussion. "My role will be to facilitate as many views as possible, encouraging diverse ideas that create a lively discussion, as well examining the role of renewables in the upcoming forty years for power generation, buildings and mobile uses," he said. The impressive panel of speakers includes R. James Woolsey, former director, Central Intelligence Agency; Robert C. (Bud) McFarlane, former national security advisor, White House and co-founder, McFarlane Associates Inc.; Scott Sklar, president, The Stella Group, LTD; Carol Werner, executive director, EESI; and Michael Ware, managing director, Advance Capital Markets with Bill Holmberg, former EPA official, and biomass coordinator, American Council On Renewable Energy.
For more information, please visit the ACORE website at http://www.renewableenergyinfo.org/.
For another take on the impact of the 1973 oil embargo, check out a blog by ACEEE here.