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New Documentary Explores Future of Energy

Texas energy expert travels the globe in search of future energy solutions
Midland -- What's the answer for our world's energy future? It's a question a lot of people ask, and one that some people think they have the answer to. It's also a question one Texas energy expert explores in an award-winning documentary.
   
It took over four years, 11 countries and 500 hours of film. The result - Switch.
   
The man behind the film is no stranger to the subject. Dr. Scott Tinker is the Director of the Bureau of Economic Geology, the State Geologist of Texas, the Associate Dean for Research, and a professor holding the Allday Endowed Chair in the Jackson School of Geosciences at the University of Texas at Austin.

"I was born in the oil patch," said Tinker, "I've been in energy my whole life."

After seeing documentary after documentary, Tinker said,  "Many of them, I think, have a pretty strong perspective. A lot of bias." 

And so he decided to team up with director Harry Lynch to produce one of his own. "We decided to get out there and make a film about global energy that we feel is pretty objective," he said.
   
Although the film has not been released locally, Young Professionals in Energy hosted a screening at the Petroleum Museum this week.
   
"The main point of his message is to say that no single source of energy is the solution, and we have to consider all these different sources of both fossil fuels and renewable energy," said Doug Schmidt, YPE director. 

"It's up to us to decide how to make all of those fit together in the energy puzzle so that we come up with the picture we can live with," added Billy Harris, Wagner & Brown petroleum engineer.
   
According to Tinker, some people think we can just "flip the switch" and change from coal to wind or from oil to biofuels.  Tinker hopes the film will allow for more reasonable discussion on our energy needs and an increased understanding that there is no quick fix.

"That switch takes a long time to throw," said Tinker.

Switch has premiered in New York City, Washington, D.C., and Boston. No word on when it will be in local theaters, but you can find tons of information at http:www.switchenergyproject.com .

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