It was a great pleasure to join Dylan Ratigan in Austin, Texas yesterday to help him launch the Defense Energy Project. I stopped by his MSNBC show to discuss how incredibly rigged the market is in favor oil and coal—the subject of my recent piece, Unearthing the True Cost of Fossil Fuels.
NASA’s Dr. James Hansen, one of the world’s most respected climate scientists, was also a guest on the program, and we talked about how the coal and oil industries get away with dumping their costs onto the American taxpayer—and how the resulting too-low prices distort the market and stifle innovation.
The Defense Energy Project, which is better outlined in this post over at Dylan Ratigan’s website, has two chief aims:
1. Enact fee & dividend, a way to restore price integrity to the fossil fuels market and level the playing field for clean energy technologies. Basically, you charge fossil fuel companies a small but increasing fee, and then distributed that fee amongst all Americans as a dividend. As Ratigan says, this essentially taxes energy waste, and rewards energy efficiency—and especially clean energy.
2. Create a program that would allow veterans who’ve risked their lives to help secure the nation’s oil supply to help secure the nation’s energy future—by helping them get jobs in the clean energy and energy efficiency industries.
If we were to do both, we’d rapidly unleash American innovation in the clean energy sector in an exciting, inspiring manner.
Ratigan will further discuss the project on his program today (more details here), so tune in.