Moreover, many uses of fossil fuels, as well as their extraction from the earth, contribute to air pollution and can cause severe damage to our health and the environment. Responsible stewardship of our planet demands that we find new ways to minimize or eliminate those effects. That goal appears attainable, and considerable progress is already evident.
Our society relies on energy that is available when and where it is needed, is generally affordable at stable prices, and can be counted on in the near future. Yet we are dependent on foreign sources for two-thirds of our petroleum supplies as well as many other resources, and the world is an uncertain place. As a result, access to some critical energy sources is beyond our control. Many planners argue that this situation threatens the economic and military security of the nation and urge policies that maximize the use of domestic resources. This is a difficult objective and will likely require many years to address thoroughly.
Meeting all three of these energy concerns will be a long-term process with unknown outcomes. Fortunately, both public and private organizations continue to support substantial energy research. There is also growing technical and financial interest in renewable and sustainable