Discusses the recent news that renewable energy (including hydro as well) now supplies more electricity to the US grid than does nuclear power. The post then goes on to list some large solar and wind projects in advanced stages of the development pipeline as a reason for being optimistic that the solar and wind side of the renewables is rapidly growing in scale.
The solar sector is among the most hated on Wall Street. Many names in the solar sector that are heavily shorted, in spite of it being the fastest growing energy sector in the U.S. Meanwhile, the world is using oil faster than it’s being pumped, which is economically dangerous, because oil price spikes have preceded all recessions since 1970. More renewables could serve to lessen our ridiculous economic vulnerability to oil prices.
While other parts of the world are busy actually building national Ultra High Voltage (UHV) transmission infrastructure the US continues to do noting more substantial than litigate. A UHV super grid would be able to move renewable energy from where it is abundant to where people live and work, and do so at an economic cost. This kind of national electric energy infrastructure would enable solar, wind, hydro and geothermal generated electric power to reach market. It is a critical piece of the kind of future energy infrastructure we will need in order to continue to prosper. John goes into a lot of detail and provides numerous links to examples and more in depth reading on this very important subject.
In this post John outlines two developments in the thermosolar concentrated solar power (CSP) arena that are enabling CSP to fulfill the role of baseload suppliers. Molten salt energy storage is naturally suited for CSP facilities and is quite efficient as an energy store — both in terms of low loss and in terms of capital expenditures (compared with batteries for example). By storing power in this way CSP plants can continue delivering power even after the sun has gone down. In addition by pairing CSP with stand-by combined-cycle natural gas generators greater overall reliability can be achieved.
Are mandated renewable energy standards the most efficient way to promote renewable energy. In this post, David argues that legislating goals for renewable energy is picking winners and losers, because many of these renewable energy standards laws mandate specific percentages for say wind or solar. He questions why so many people, in light of the recent nuclear disaster in Japan, have rejected nuclear power and he makes the claim that renewable sources of energy cannot provide baseload electric energy supplies. These are arguments that advocates of wind and solar need to address head on.
The nuclear crisis in Japan is a wake up call demonstrating that nuclear power is not the silver bullet against climate change that governments and advocates have claimed. Much more effort, resources and political will has to be directed toward alternative sources of energy: energy saving, renewable, and changing of life styles.
To shift the global economy from fossil fuels to renewable energy will require the construction of wind, solar, nuclear, and other installations on a vast scale, significantly altering the face of the planet. Can these new forms of energy approach the scale needed to meet the world’s energy demands?
A new study that is sure to create some controversy proposes that the world can provide for all of its energy needs, including electric, transportation, heating/cooling energy needs using only wind, water, and solar power by 2030.
The loss of the Democratically controlled Congress, does not spell doom for cleantech. Republicans and Democrats can find common ground in areas like energy efficiency, renewable energy standards, R&D, government procurement, and a gas tax. Additionally, global macro-economic trends will continue to have an impact on our energy policy. by David Gold, Lead Partner for […]