Vision under the sun

While checking Googleblog, I came across a very interesting post. And I was amazed to discover that thirty years ago, the United States– then under the presidency of Jimmy Carter (he of the Habitat for Humanity fame, and a peace and human rights advocate)– already had the vision of the importance of alternative sources of energy. At that time, this country was of course feeling the pinch of the ’70s oil crisis. So to find ways of easing this country’s dependence on foreign oil, the government set its sight on solar energy. Now this step might seem just ordinary, as all governments understandably spearhead programs for the betterment of its people. But what set it apart from other bureaucratic decisions– and this was what stunned me– was the direction of the efforts the government took: somehow, in a visionary, forward-thinking move, it approved the installation of solar hot water panels on the roof of the White House itself! Such commitment– and genius! Initiating the effort right on the seat of executive power! What better way to show the people that the initiative starts with the government! (Incidentally, at around the same time, the Philippines was also immersed in the search for alternative sources of energy, with projects such as S.E.E.R. or Searchers Exposition on Energy Resources.)
Now, thirty years later, the call to the solution of the United States’ energy woes beckons even louder– with the beneficiaries of this program extending not just to homeowners and businesses but to automobiles as well. It is reassuring and important to remember that, somehow, at one point in history, this country seemed to be on the right track!
To find out what happened to those solar hot water panels in the White House, you can read it on Googleblog.