The global oil industry is currently reeling under the pressures of low prices brought about by an oversupply of the commodity. There have been worries among green energy supporters that the historical lows could bring about a decrease in the development of alternative energy sources. This short report seeks to argue that the low prices may indeed result in more emphasis towards the development of alternative energy sources.
As Suzanne Goldenberg provides, the world’s net oil exporters are at the fore front of investing in alternative energy sources, more so, renewable energy sources like solar as well as wind power generation. This is in part informed by an economic standpoint such that, investing on such energy sources will enable them to export more and thus, make higher returns from the international oil markets. Cutting on domestic consumption by most of the OPEC member nations has resulted in the removal of water and electricity subsidies, imposition of energy conservation protocols (Goldenberg). More so, motivating home owners to set up solar panels to enable further cutbacks on fossil fuel based energy production.
Another factor that support the development of substitute energy sources is that the current price of crude oil fails to reflect the true cost associated with fossil fuels. It fails to consider subsequent environmental degradation, adverse human health outcomes and associated subsidies (Goldenberg). Similarly, the uncertainty associated with oil markets is encouraging proactive organizations and government to invest savings accrued from low oil prices into alternative energy sources. As such, there is the high likelihoods that oil prices can rebound upwards again thus the need to invest in alternative energy sources (Nyquist). China’s low cost alternative energy generators has also enabled poorer countries to actively invest in alternative energy sources. One can therefore categorically quip that low prices may indeed result in more emphasis towards the development of alternative energy sources.
Are electric cars currently always a better alternative to fossil fuel powered vehicles for personal transportation?
According to Loannides and Wall-Reinius (12), electrical vehicles are in essence replacing fuel guzzlers as more people favor them for personal transportation as technologies improve. A few years back when the international crude oil prices had risen to historic highs, a great number of car manufacturers sought to fast track the innovative development of personal transportation cars that depended on alternative energy sources. As such, the efficiency of these cars has led more consumers to increasing incline to owning electric vehicles.
There are a number of reasons why the contemporary car owners is opting on vehicles for personal transportation that runs on alternative energy sources (Agnihotri). Governments are subsiding such manufacturers in an effort to conform to calls for more emphasis on green energy to counter the adverse impacts associated with global warming. As such, these cars have come to be more affordable to a greater customer base as the cost of production falls. Similarly, these cars present owners with lower maintenance costs, are rated highly on energy efficiency and are more quite.
Electric cars present owners with a myriad of money saving incentives. For instance, some states within the US offer tax incentives in addition to what the federal government offers (Agnihotri). As more people continue to feel the pressures of global warming, they are warming up more to personal transportation options with zero emissions. One can therefore comprehensively conclude that electric cars will always present a better alternative to fossil fuel powered vehicles for personal transportation.
Agnihotri, Gaurav. Can electric vehicles take the private transportation crown? 2015. Web. 8. Feb. 2016. < http://oilprice.com/Energy/Energy-General/Can-Electric-Vehicles-Take-The-Private-Transportation-Crown.html >.
Goldenberg, Suzanne. ‘Slump in oil prices drives green energy take up in top exporting nations.’ The Guardian. 2016. Web. 8 Feb. 2016. < http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/jan/20/slump-in-oil-prices-drives-green-energy-take-up-in-top-exporting-nations >.
Ioannides, Dimitri and Wall-Reinius, Sandra. ‘Sustainable mobility in the periphery: Are electric vehicles the answer? Review of international literature on electric vehicles and ideas for further research.’ ETOUR Report 2015: 3. 2015. Web. 8 Feb. 2016. < http://www.miun.se/siteassets/forskning/center-och-institut/etour/publikationer/etour-rapport-2015-3pdf >.
Nyquist, Scott. ‘Lower oil prices but more renewables: What’s going on?’ McKinsey & Company. 2015. Web. 8 Feb. 2016. < http://www.mckinsey.com/insights/energy_resources_materials/lower_oil_prices_but_more_renewables_whats_going_on >.