World Oil Crisis – Can Clark Set the Standard for Innovation?

In the time it takes a person to read this sentence, the world will have used about 8,000 barrels, or 336,000 gallons of oil!At 1000 barrels per second, it’s going fast! With China and India developing exponentially faster than ever imagined, we are at a point in history where we have to make some tough choices or risk unimaginable loss.

China for instance, is experiencing an escalation of first-time car buyers that’s unprecedented in modern history – in years past, the majority of the people in this nation of over 1.3 billion would use bicycles as their main mode of transportation.As the Chinese people find themselves in the midst of a period of unparalleled economic growth and prosperity over the last 20 years, the masses are now replacing their bicycles with automobiles.Growing more than eightfold since 2000, China has recently passed Japan to become the world’s second-largest car market, behind the United States.What do staggering car sales, intense industrial production and the related energy consumption and emissions mean to China and the rest of the world?

On Thursday of last week in the good old USA, Al Gore made a speech that was closely watched by a nation in a state of energy-shock and in the grips of the beginning phases of a dramatic recession.In the past months Gore has been hosting a series of solutions summits with scientists, engineers, CEOs, and financiers. Gore’s speech pulled together some of the best ideas gathered from those talks with these top experts from around the world.He detailed what each person can do to help curtail the world’s dangerous addiction to fossil fuels and help solve the climate crisis.He also proposed an aggressive plan that if embraced, would enable the U.S. to both end its reliance on imported fossil fuels and drastically cut greenhouse gas emissions to boot.

Gore’s aggressive plan calls for converting the entire electrical power system of the U.S. to renewable, eco-friendly sources of energy within an accelerated time-frame of only 10 years.Gore emphasized: “We’re borrowing money from China to buy oil from the Persian Gulf to burn it in ways that destroy the planet. Every bit of that’s got to change.” Gore claims the technology is in place and all that is needed is the political will to take America into a new energy-independent era of solar, wind and geothermal power.Theses clean and renewable energy resources are highly-desirable, and at this point critically necessary.America and the world desperately need new clean energy assets that emit zero greenhouse gas and would help to curtail the exponentially-progressing climate change currently taking place on mother earth.

The world, not America, not the Philippines or any other country, are at a crossroads – if we don’t focus ourselves of this pivotal point in history and make some drastic choices, and soon, we could be faced with some extreme consequences we don’t even want to admit are possible.We are looking at dramatic penalties for delaying our action – consequences such as extreme weather and the rise of the oceans to levels that will encroach on coastal areas, displacing hundreds of millions of people from their homes.

We are already witnessing damaging and frequent extreme-weather conditions around the world.As we take inventory of intense weather tearing-up the world and causing devastation, we are quite honestly frightened for our future.In the Philippines, we are seeing an earlier start to the typhoon season each year as the intensity and numbers of these killer-storms rise.Just recently, Typhoon Fengshen left more than 1300 people dead or missing. As the current typhoon season approaches, around 20 typhoons are predicted by our weather service to hit the Philippines over the next several months.The recent Myanmar cyclone that killed 84537 people and left 53836 more missing has left that Southeast Asian neighbor entirely devastated with their rice fields under water and unusable for many months or possibly years to come.

America imports 70% of their oil every year and the Philippines importing 100% of ours.If we want to eliminate unstable, rouge, Middle Eastern nations dictating our oil prices and leaving wide-open the possibility of our economy coming to a complete, grinding-collapse, then we need to start to brain-storm, innovate, and facilitate creative ideas that will put us on a course of energy independence – and we need to start now!

I would like to suggest a plan that would allow the locators and governmental entities in Clark to lead the way and provide some ground-breaking opportunity for pioneering change in the Philippines.If properly implemented and supported by government and local industry, I feel this program could be a model for the rest of the nation and possibly the rest of the world.This program could ultimately helping encourage and inspire private business and governments to take the reigns in order to create worldwide green energy solutions to help mediate this weather crisis and lessen the dependence on foreign oil sources.

What if we were to start a private-sector program backed and funded by the companies in Clark?This program would be formed to subsidize public transportation for the Clark Zone, eventually encouraging an all-electric employee-commute transportation system?This program would establish a fund providing a source of low to no-interest loans to encourage Jeepney owners to convert existing, or purchase new, clean, all-electric Jeepney vehicles for transporting workers in and out of the Freeport.

I see this as a voluntary program, establishing yearly contributions to the fund, with the amount of each Clark business owner’s contribution directly related to the number of employees in their employ.With large companies such as Texas Instruments and Samsung participating, substantial fund loading could be realized to ensure the success and sustainability of this plan.

As an incentive for the locators to contribute to this program, the government could offer each participating-company a large tax credit, reducing their taxable income.The amount of credit extended could be a percentage of the individual locator’s contribution to the program – this would create a system where the larger the contribution to the program, the larger the tax credit to the company.

We could ask for CDC’s help in establishing a graduated-mandate. This mandate would state that within a given number of years, all vehicles providing public transportation in the Zone must participate in the Clark Electric Transportation Program.

A NGO oversight supervision group with a credible-history of managing green energy resources and funds would coordinate and monitor the distribution and repayments of loans supplied to the Jeepney owners as well as coordinates and collect the fund of the business owners in the Freeport.

Additionally, this oversight group would be responsible for the build-out of solar-powered electrical charging stations within the Freeport, allowing for entirely free charging to Jeepney owners participating in the program.This oversight group could also be responsible for forming strategic partnerships with companies that produce solar cells right here in the Philippines such as Sun Power, producer of some of the worlds most efficient and creative solar cell products.Companies such as this could help offset the cost of the panels for the charging stations.They could also be issued tax incentives and worldwide exposure as a major contributor to an important green energy solution.
For additional information on Sun Power we’ve included their website address and a couple press releases detailing their Philippine operations below:

http://www.sunpowercorp.com
http://investors.sunpowercorp.com/releasedetail.cfm?ReleaseID=179419
http://investors.sunpowercorp.com/releasedetail.cfm?ReleaseID=256947

On the horizon is new super-capacitor battery technology that will increase the effective range of electric vehicles before needing a charge by a factor of 10, and decrease the charging time dramatically to as low as 5 minutes for a full charge.A company called Eestor, based in Texas, is currently working on this technology and is expected to release production units sometime this year.With new, ever-evolving, high efficiency solar cells and longer lasting battery technology and a passion for individual involvement, innovation and change, we can do this!For additional information about Eestor technology, read the Wikipedia article below:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EEStor

I feel the Clark Freeport Zone is ideally suited for a green energy pilot-program of dramatic and far-sighted scope and proportion.We are an independently-governed and highly-concentrated business zone with a growing base of high-tech companies – several involved in silicon chip manufacturing. The Philippines is home to one of the most efficient and innovative silicon solar-cell manufacturing companies in the world.New battery technology is on the horizon making possible, dramatically extended ranges between charging for electric vehicles. Understanding the opportunity set before us, the world energy demands, the climate change emergency, quickly increased food prices and the need for clean transportation services for our workers, lets labor together to bring a model program, harnessing the free power of the sun to Clark.

I welcome the comments, suggestions and constructive criticism of all Clark locators and anyone with additional ideas here. Please submit your comment using the comment link below.

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