The Antidote to Putin’s Power is Green Energy
This morning I listened to intelligence expert Michael Morell on CBS Mornings talk about Putin’s motivation for attacking Ukraine. He said 25% of Putin’s motivation comes from his desire to build a buffer between Russia and NATO nations. The other 75% is his fear that a free and prosperous Ukraine would motivate Russians to rise up and overthrow him.
We haven’t yet imposed sanctions on Russia’s most valuable exports — oil and national gas. We’ve held back because we are afraid of the economic ramifications across the globe and particularly in the U.S. when we are already hurting from inflation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. This hesitation, Morell argued, shows weakness on the part of the West. He said it shows that we value the sovereignty of Ukraine, and potentially the Baltic nations Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, equally with our own short-term economic interests, and, perhaps, a bit less.
I am not an expert on Russia, and certainly not on the mind of Vladimir Putin. Morell is, and we’ve seen this week that all of the intelligence reports over the past few weeks were accurate. We watched the Russian attacks unfold exactly as the intelligence community predicted that they would.
I think deeply about sustainability and the vision of building a truly clean, sustainable, healthy planet. For me, the answer to the threat of the Russian dictatorship, other totalitarian regimes such as Saudi Arabia, and to the health of our planet lies in green energy — sustainable, renewable, affordable, clean, and locally produced. Without the need for oil and natural gas, the power of these dictators withers and the planet thrives. Energy independence creates political and economic independence. Clean energy means a clean world where life can flourish. Clean energy is freedom, in every sense.
The world will never be free from the tyranny of Putin and others like him if we remain dependent on oil and natural gas. We will relive this nightmare many times over in many parts of the world if we don’t make massive reforms in our energy policy, supply, and investments. We know what we need to do. Do we have the resolve to do what’s right for people and the planet before it’s too late?