Time Essay: Yes, There Is An Energy Crisis

Six months have passed since President Carter unwrapped his national energy plan, and the energy crisis has become a confusion crisis. Indeed, three Presidents, including Carter, have produced three separate energy programs, yet the nation remains as perplexed as ever by the fundamental question: Is there really an energy shortage?

More precisely, since no one contends that coal and uranium supplies are running out, is there a shortage of oil and gas?

At one extreme, analysts like M.I.T. Professor of Technology Carroll Wilson argue that, given the wrong set of bad-luck breaks (for instance, a Saudi decision to hold back production), world oil...

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