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ESSAY OF THE WEEK


Question
"Major oil companies should spend their research dollars on the development of alternative fuels, rather than on new methods to find and draw out oil from the earth."

Discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the opinion stated above. Support your views with reasons and/or examples from your own experience, observations, or reading.

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 Submitted Essays
DHARMESH MAHAJAN: 11/9/2009
The opinion stated above is a fact which everyone need to understand as call of the hour. There is a limit up to which one can harness the non-renewable sources of energy, fossil oil being one of them. On the other hand, alternative fuels or renewable fuels as they are normally known as provide an ample opportunity of getting most of the free source of energy available like wind, solar, geothermal etc. Most logical reason for this agreement with the opinion cited above is availability of resources for alternative fuels in the forms mentioned above in plenty. Beside that, alternative fuels offer another huge advantage of being clean alternvatives compared to fossil energy sources like diesel. One always need to be reminded about the heritage in terms of nature & environment one is going to leave for the next generation to come. Today, oceans are getting polluted, air is full of poisonous pollutants, land is loaded heavily with pesticides & other chemicals. All these changes are impacting human life which is above all the things that matter in businesses. Current available resources of oil is already depleting rapidly & Big Oil theory is going to end very soon. We have to change our approach to get free of our dependence on oil stored deep in earth & get an alternative solution in place which only alternative fuels can provide.
   
 
Essay Answer 

Reference Essay

The world economy is based on the availability of petroleum, yet petroleum is in limited supply. The immediate needs of the world economy must be addressed. At the same time, the major fuel producers would be well-advised to look for alternative energy sources for the future. Additionally, research into alternative fuels should not be left to the major oil companies alone. Governments have an important role to play in the direction of development and distribution of alternative fuel sources.

It's unrealistic to expect the oil companies to focus all of their research efforts on finding alternative fuels. The world economy is currently based on petroleum and that basis cannot be changed overnight. Even if a new alternative were developed tomorrow, the cost of converting to that alternative would be prohibitive. More likely, individuals and corporations would move to alternatives as they needed to replace petroleum powered vehicles and equipment.

At the same time, it is clear that our dependence on oil and petroleum cannot last forever. Oil is in limited supply. It is not clear that exploration will reveal new sources of oil in sufficient quantity to allow us to continue relying on petroleum. Methods of extracting oil from less desirable sources are unproven and expensive. Failure to locate new sources of oil or new methods for extracting oil will lead to a worldwide economic crisis.

Work should be done now to identify and experiment with alternative fuels that have the potential to support the existing and future needs of our petroleum based economy. It is natural to think that the major oil companies will lead this research, however, there is no guarantee of this. Oil companies are, for the most part, private entities and they do not always have the best interest of society at heart. The governments of industrialized nations should play a leading role in the development of alternative fuels. This will allow equitable access to any successful fuel alternatives that are developed for all countries.
 
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