“It is not too much to expect that our children will enjoy in their homes electrical energy too cheap to meter, will know of great periodic regional famines in the world only as matters of history, will travel effortlessly over the seas and under them and through the air with a minimum of danger and at great speeds, and will experience a lifespan far longer than ours as disease yields and man comes to understand what causes him to age.”
Lewis L. Strauss
Speech to the National Association of Science Writers, New York City, 1954.
My, how times have changed. Today, oil is over $80 a barrel and cheap-n-dirty coal costs more than $100 a tonne. As this piece highlights, energy bargains are a thing of the past. To put these prices in context: at the height of the 70s oil crisis, oil cost less than $50 a barrel in today’s money. And just 10 years ago you could get nearly 5 tonnes of coal for $100.