Remember the energy crisis? It was just last summer that blackouts in California and skyrocketing gas prices gave us a case of 1970s déjà vu — the days when lines at the pumps and out-of-gas signs were ubiquitous. Despite its disappearance from the front pages of our newspapers and lead-ins to our nightly TV news programs, the energy crunch remains as much of a threat as ever to the United States — including small towns like Westport, Weston, Fairfield and Wilton. Perhaps even more so now that America has become deeply involved with all of the Mideast oil-producing nations. In fact, in the immediate aftermath of the first terrorist attack on America in its history, President George W. Bush declared that this nation is “still too dependent on Arab oil.”
Some officials fear that last summer’s crisis, nationally and locally, was only a warm-up for the energy crunch that looms ahead in 2002. There could be a more devastating shortage this year, because, preoccupied with the terrorist crisis and the sagging economy, Congress has done nothing about energy conservation. While America’s national security has grabbed the limelight, the turmoil in the Persian Gulf has raised fears about potential disruptions in our oil supply.