Impact of High Fuel Costs
The rise in the cost of fuel has had an impact in many areas of our economy. Higher food prices, costs of heating, and transportation have had the largest affect on the average American. This change has forced us to make choices in order to maintain our current quality of life and has sparked a philosophical debate as to how we arrived here and how we should attack this problem in the short term and in the future. Do we maintain our consumption and current dependence on oil? Or do we change and look for other energy solutions. What role should the government play in our decision? Will the free market solve it's own problems. There really does not appear to be any short- term solution other than to convince our suppliers to produce more oil, which would bring the price down. Unfortunately, there is no real incentive for them to do so. Proponents of the free market would say it is the fault of the government whose regulations have prohibited drilling for oil in this country sustaining our need to rely on foreign suppliers. They would suggest opening up drilling and building our own refineries. The increased supply would eventually bring the price down and many believe that the concept alone would influence foreign suppliers to produce more. The high price of fuel will now make other sources of energy worth exploring because they are now competitive as far as price verses cost to manufacture.