To give you an idea about where the energy is going, and faster than we can create new sources, China is building the equivalent of 2 New York Cities per year. That’s how many more people in just one year? Just about 17 million, and that’s only 1 country. Just think of what’s happening around the world. And we need to find and build more energy supplying sources. There will be an extra 1.3 billion (1,300,000,000) people requiring twice as much energy in the next 10 years. How are we going to do it?
China’s people are becoming the new middle class of the world with the US becoming a 2nd rate or even a 3 rate country if we don’t start doing something now to change the future.
Are the energy sources up to the job? Well, nuclear energy could supply 9%, maybe 15%, if we build new plants, but that would take a change in the attitude of the people in the different countries and then what would we do with the radioactive waste that every nuclear plant creates, every day?
We could build new dams which could supply up to 25% of the worlds energy needs, but we would have to dam every river in the world. Some of them would require multiple dams. Then where would all the migratory fish and water life go? You can’t build a dam and still allow all the fish to go up and down the river. Only the salmon can use water ladders to return to their breeding grounds as it has always been their nature to go up water falls throughout history.
Wind would be a good idea and would give us up to 30% of our needs, but as you noticed, I said ‘up to’. The bad part of this is that the wind has to be blowing all the time on all the windmills all the time. You and I know that doesn’t happen so windmills will help, but not really enough.
Solar cells now only supply 0.1% but we would need over 4,000 times as many as we now have to really make a difference. But the good part is that it would supply us with power as long as the sun shines. Which means that over 50% of them will not be producing 50% of the time. They would also require millions and millions of hectares of land that people could not live or work on.
With the right mobilization you and I can do just about anything, but it also requires industries to create and change to new technologies. Renewable energy in not just a plant but also a business that we all need to be a part of. We could use existing factories and change the existing equipment to make new products for using or creating renewable energy.
You and I need to get together with all the rest of our friends, neighbors, countrymen and the rest of the people on earth to design/create new sources of energy
- Study: 100 percent renewable energy possible by 2030 (sfgate.com)
- Energy: Hydrocarbons in North America (energybulletin.net)
- Can renewable energy power the entire globe? (terracurve.com)
- The BP Energy Outlook to 2030 – a review (theoildrum.com)
- The world can be powered by alternative energy, using today’s technology, in 20-40 years (eurekalert.org)
- Obama Calls for ‘Clean’ Energy Mandate, End to Oil Tax Breaks (environmentalleader.com)
- Open thread for night owls: SOTU – Infrastructure/Innovation (dailykos.com)