Yes, the basic definition of sustainability states that we must meet the needs of today’s generations without compromising the abilities of future generations to meet their own. This same principle applies to where we get our energy. We must be able to harness energy sources that will continue to exist for future generations. Fossil fuels have a finite amount available for human extraction which makes the source unsustainable; however, if we harness sources such as wind, tidal energy, or sunlight, that will persist infinitely, then we will be on our way to being a sustainable country.
Not only does the country need to switch over to renewable resources; they need to relocalize food production and other resources to reduce the need for energy. The average meal travels 1500 miles from production to the table. Alternative energy is great but as the technology stands right now, none of it is nearly as efficient as oil. Ironically also, the materials used to make and set up devices used in alternative energy rely on oil. John Kunstler goes into great detail about the need to relocalize economies in order to build a sustainable nation in his book The Long Emergency. Richard Heinberg also writes extensively about this topic.
Since energy is vital to almost every country, having a sustainable supply of it is necessary to continue to be sustainable for the future. Without energy, a country couldn’t function like the way it does today. Having unsustainable energy sources creates many problems for future generations. Like americalibre mentioned, energy isn’t the only unsustainable thing in a country, and more needs to be done to bring a better tomorrow to everyone.
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