Wednesday, November 26, 2014

What about fusion energy?

So may be fusion can rescue us? I remember hearing about this in my teens (some 50 years ago). A solution always seems to be 20 years away. I expect this will eventually solve the energy problem but NOT in time to stop global warming. At NextBigFuture there is valuable review of the state of play of this important and promising but complicated and very expensive technology.

Can renewable energy help?

According to reports a major project by Google to find a cheaper-than-coal, competitive renewable energy solution failed:
"even if Google and others had led the way toward a wholesale adoption of renewable energy, that switch would not have resulted in significant reductions of carbon dioxide emissions. Trying to combat climate change exclusively with today’s renewable energy technologies simply won’t work; we need a fundamentally different approach."
They did not find a solution which would "be able to deliver a technology that could compete economically with coal". In other words there is no purely economic solution. According to the report:
 "Let’s face it, businesses won’t make sacrifices and pay more for clean energy based on altruism alone. Instead, we need solutions that appeal to their profit motives."
It seems that the time to learn some altruism is at hand. There is no easy, convenient solution available. Governments, indeed nations, need to face their responsibilities. Behaviours must change.