A lot of people think that we are utterly dependent on burning oil for energy for our modern existence, but this is patently untrue. One example of potential independence is biodiesel. I own two diesels (a car and a truck) and I put biodiesel into them when I can, but it costs significantly more than petroleum diesel. This is due to the tax breaks given to Big Oil, and the fact that no one is paying for the major externality of burning petrofuels, carbon dioxide. The US government proved at Sandia NREL in the 1980s that producing biodiesel from algae grown in open raceway ponds was not only feasible, but that it should be profitable with diesel fuel retailing at $3/gallon.