The US credit crisis bialout includes $1.5 Billion for "clean-coal" projects.
The fact that the US govt. could come up with $800Billion [so far] for the bankers sorta lets the cat out of the bag - governments can provide lots of money when they really need to. Switching over to renewable energy is something we REALLY need to do now.
Imagine the prices of almost everything going lower, and incomes staying the same. Thats what we will have if we develop renewable energy capacity - the prices of EVERYTHING will go down when energy is cheaper.
The idea of constant growth has come back to bite the capitalist/corporate world now that house prices have fallen. Global warming is only one of the problems with constant growth economics, there are many reasons why it not sustainable.
The vision of a better future is where we have clean, cheap energy. With government money for start-up funding, we could begin to build enough capacity from renewable energy sources to provide us with that clean, cheap electricity. We could use it to power our electric cars too - for the 50% of people who would want them once they see the benefits of driving electric cars [cheaper to recharge that to refuel; almost no maintenance required; cheaper to build once mass production starts; emissions-free so global warming, asthma, cancer and heart disease rates will all drop significantly].
The economics of renewable energy is that it takes a little longer to get a return on the investment... but then after that period, the returns are much better than with oil and gas. Today's standard is about 3 yrs to start making a profit, but a better world [with renewable energy] needs about 5 or 10, and with government help it could end up being much cheaper overall.
After the investment is paid off, wind and solar installations give us FREE electricity for another 20 years!!! Thats the big economic advantage.
We must stop pandering to the fossil fuel interests who demand a profit in 3 years, a better world deserves a longer timeline. Thinking short term is the cause of most of the problems we have now.
We should feel optimistic - a better world awaits us, we just have to reach out and demand it. Everything will cost LESS - isn't that just as good as needing to have more money because prices keep rising?
The bailout is providing $1.5 Billion for clean coal technology, and so far it has not been proven to work, or be economical. See the article at the link for 5 good points on this:
5 Dirty Aspects of Clean Coal