As skyrocketing oil and gas prices always do, today's sudden price increases at the pump will temporarily remind us of how exposed this country is to the vagaries of fossil fuel. People will begin to recall the importance of renewable energy and its support will spike, temporarily. If history is any guide, however, international events will eventually calm, oil and gas prices will fall back some and everyone will return to complacency regarding renewable energy.
Between times of international instability that cause fossil fuel prices to spike, the market prices of fossil fuels are less than those of renewable energy. If (and it's a big if) we ignore the hidden societal costs of fossil fuels - pollution, effects on health and economic risk - fossil fuels are cheaper than renewable energy. Of course, that masks the need to prioritize renewable energy and it causes most of us to be complacent.
Here's a suggestion: Every time you fill your gas tank or fill your oil tank this year and you find your eyes widening at the cost, take a few minutes to consider the need to prioritize renewable energy in the long term. Remind yourself that this will mean investing in renewable energy as a society even though markets are telling you that fossil fuels are cheaper. That is, use the sticker shock that is coming at you as you read this to prod yourself into thinking about supporting renewable energy in the long term. And then use that sticker shock to prevent your return to complacency when oil and gas prices return, for awhile anyway, to sane levels by year's end.
If you're not already on the renewable energy bandwagon, use this year's eminently predictable wave of shocking oil and gas prices to get on that bandwagon!
p.s. - And reserve some time to consider increased use of natural gas and nuclear. While natural gas has more hidden costs than renewable energy, it's far cleaner than oil and we have plenty of it here in the U.S. Nuclear has issues, but it's worth considering too. (See Jason and Scion, I do listen).