Chris Martenson writes: The main issue is simple: putting in steel reinforcing bars lowers the cost and weight of installing reinforced concrete, but at the severe expense of reducing its lifespan. In other words, literally everything you see today that’s made of concrete will need to be replaced within a hundred years of its installation.
The introduction to Our Renewable Future, a new book on the profound, all-encompassing energy transformation that will be witnessed throughout the world over the next few decades. Two irresistible forces will drive this historic transition: the necessity of avoiding catastrophic climate change and the ongoing depletion of the world’s oil, coal, and natural gas resources.
The Centre’s recent directive to state-owned power generation firms to stop coal imports and instead buy domestic coal, saw skeptical voices warning against seeing it as a sign of new commitment to reduce coal consumption. However, there’s good reason to the hope that India may be moving away from coal, irrespective of the government’s intent.
The way we get electricity is about to change dramatically, as demand for fossil fuels comes to an end— in less than a decade. According to a Bloomberg New Energy Finance forecast, massive shifts are coming soon to power markets because electric cars and affordable battery storage for renewable power are arriving faster than expected.
Bloomberg reports that cheaper coal and gas will not derail the decarbonisation of world energy. By 2040, ‘zero-emission’ energy sources will form 60% of installed capacity. Wind and solar will account for 64% of the 8.6TW of new power-generating capacity added over the next 25 years, and for almost 60% of the $11.4 trillion invested.
Post the Paris climate agreement, the world looks to solar energy more than ever to reduce carbon emissions and counter climate change, with multi-billion dollar solar programmes announced by just about every major country. But just how efficient, and environmentally sustainable is the celebrated solar photovoltaic technology? Here’s what some leading voices have to say.
Ugo Bardi writes: I am reporting the results of a small survey that I carried out last week among members of a discussion forum; mainly experts in renewable energy. The question was about the possibility of obtaining a society 100% based on renewable energy sources, before it is too late to avoid the climate disaster.
India in its INDC pledged to achieve 40% cumulative electric power installed capacity from non-fossil fuel based energy resources by 2030. The carbon cess will help provide a clear and direct indication to the market of rising regulatory risks that hover over the fossil fuel industry and build business confidence in the non-fossil fuel industry.
Jeremy Leggett writes: A Saudi Prince talks of his nation’s “dangerous addiction” to oil. A Bloomberg guru talks of renewables “crushing” fossil fuels. Arguably the most successful entrepreneur ever turns the unveiling of an electric car into the most successful product launch in history. Plus much more that would have been unimaginable a year ago.
The physics of energy and the economy evokes some trepidation. An economy seems to be a dissipative system, but what does this really mean? Not many people understand dissipative systems, and very few understand how an economy operates. The combination leads to an awfully lot of false beliefs about the energy needs of an economy.
Noted energy expert Richard Heinberg writes: Our primary task this century will be to shrink the economy and rein in population while promoting human well being. We can do so as we minimize climate change by reducing energy consumption and by replacing fossil fuels with renewable energy resources. Otherwise, we get climate chaos and economic collapse.
The heat and the death toll are rising in India. Is this a glimpse of Earth’s future? The Guardian UK India is struggling to cope with one of the deadliest heatwaves to hit the subcontinent. And its attempt to do so is raising a question for the whole planet – how can humans cope with