300 FORMS OF ENERGY every kilowatt-hour of electrical energy produced by water power saves not less than three quarters of a pound of coal or its equivalent. When finished, the Grand Coulee Dam will develop 2,700,000 horsepower, more than all the present dams of the T.V.A. system. A ten-dam system, of which the Grand Coulee Dam and the Bonneville Dams are a part, could produce more than two per cent of the power requirements of the United States. Fig. 99. Water mills at Eul, France. Water-wheels were used before the industrial revolution. The Connally Act and the Interstate Oil Compact Regulate the Petroleum and Natural-gas Industry in the PubUc Interest. Practically 100 per cent of the energy requirements of automobiles and airplanes are derived from petroleum; 93 per cent of the tonnage of ocean-going vessels of the United States Merchant Marine is moved by oil, and practically all of the United States Navy vessels are powered by petroleum products. A high per cent of agricultural work is done by tractors and other machines which use petroleum products for power. Since 1924 the United States Government has indicated that the private operation of the petroleum industry should be in line with public welfare. The Connally Act prevents the interstate or foreign shipments of oil produced in violation of State laws. The Interstate
THE CONSERVATION OF OUR ENERGY RESOURCES 301 Oil Compact is a treaty, approved by Congress, between a number of oil-producing states authorizing them to work toward uniform conserv-ation laws. Several important oil-producing States did not enter the compact, and some of the States that did enter the compact do not have conservation laws. It seems quite likely that Federal regulation of the production and distribution of petroleum and natural '*^ gas will have to come soon in order to prevent the waste of this irreplaceable resource. More Power at Less Cost Should Be an Immediate Goal. There are about 4,000,000 farms without electricity in the United States, partly because rural electrification is so expensive that private electric companies cannot afford to install the required equipment and partly because farmers' incomes are so small. The United States Government set up the Rural Electrification Administration in 1935 to aid in the building of rural power lines, and the Electric Home and Farm Authority to help farmers buy electric equipment. Many more millions of city families cannot afford to buy electrical appliances that they need. One of the outstanding problems of today is cheaper electricity and less expensive electrical appliances. One of the major contributions of the Roosevelt Administration was the creation of the tremendous Tennessee Valley Authority, which had for one of its avowed purposes the reduction of electricity rates. million people are expected to benefit from this cheaper power. Because electricity is a public utility; nearly all states have set up Public Service Commissions to regulate electric rates. Most of the electric industry in America is controlled by ten or more large holding companies, which had not been regulated until Fig. 100. A "gusher." A geyser of oil that is very difficult to control. (Courtesy of the Union Oil Company.) Six Congress passed the Public Utility Act of 1935. Many municipalities have built and operated their own power plants and have brought electricity prices down by demonstrating that electricity could be sold more cheaply than private companies were selling it.