Friday, 23 May 2014

Why the only future is a green future

Now there is little doubt in the world of rational people that climate change is real, and it's already happening. Yet many people are still opposed to wind farms or solar farms or really any other green source of energy. 

Now there used to be a very valid reason why many of these technologies haven't been adopted, and that was price. As these technologies were very new a decade ago, they were incredibly expensive and not very efficient. However, things have come along dramatically since then, and as these technologies begin to mature it makes more and more economic sense to start using them more and more. 

This is only really here because it looked cool :)


With numbers like 65% growth in solar power over 5 years, US solar costs at 97% less than in 1975 and the recent news that solar power is now the same price as conventional energy in Germany, Italy, Portugal, Australia and Spain, clearly solar is the current golden boy of the green revolution. The best indication of this is the response of some utility companies. The best case study of which is Arizona, which has seen household solar power increase from 4770 to 14524 in 2 years. As households in Arizona are becoming increasing less reliant on the grid, the utility companies have started to wage a war of propaganda over household solar and have spent nearly $4 million in advertising in 2012. This is an indication of how worried energy companies are about the very real possibility of them becoming completely obsolete! With prices falling and numbers growing, it isn't hard to see why. 

This graph shows just how rapidly solar power is coming down in price, and forecasts that this will continue to drop over the rest of this decade


This is then compounded with the ability to store this solar power for a cloudy day (as a brit that is very important!) and also the numerous other green technologies that are making it easier and easier to go green. This is compounded by the fact that traditional energy sources are becoming more and more expensive and risky and constant news that energy companies aren't playing fairly. 

It is highly likely that green tech (particularly solar) will go the way of the mobile phone, the internet and computers; from obscurity to ubiquity in a matter of decades. With the prices constantly improving, green energy is becoming not only the better moral choice but also the better economic choice.

Sources

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/fight-over-rooftop-solar-forecasts-a-bright-future-for-cleaner-energy/
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/innovations/wp/2014/03/25/grid-parity-why-electric-utilities-should-struggle-to-sleep-at-night/
http://blog.comparemysolar.co.uk/10-year-forecast-of-solar-panel-prices/
http://www.ted.com/talks/jennifer_granholm_a_clean_energy_proposal_race_to_the_top
http://www.ted.com/talks/david_mackay_a_reality_check_on_renewables

0 comments:

Post a Comment