Katrina's Energy Agenda
Natural Resources & Environment, Vol. 20, No. 4, Spring 2006
7 Pages Posted: 21 Sep 2006
Hurricane Katrina is a warning for the United States not only about disaster response but also about planning for a healthy and productive energy economy. The Energy Policy Act of 2005, signed into law only months before Katrina, continues a policy that has dominated our energy thinking for over a century. Neither the United States nor the world can continue on a path of increased fossil fuel burning without acknowledging the long-term, global, difficult to manage, and complex to understand consequences of climate change. This article advocates a significant energy transition away from that path to become less dependent on fossil fuels and more dependent on cleaner renewable and alternative fuels. An alternative energy policy has been developing over the last three decades that is based on the assumption that energy production has a direct impact on the quality of the environment, on national security, and on global relations, as well as on a healthy pro-growth economy. Katrina presents an opportunity to reevaluate the traditional policy and to engage in a transition to this new "smart" energy policy for a strong economic future.
Keywords: Katrina, Energy, Environment, Natural Resources
JEL Classification: K32
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation