100 Percent Wishful Thinking: the Green-Energy Cornucopia
Cox, Stan; Cox, Paulhttp://www.counterpunch.org/2017/09/14/100-percent-wishful-thinking-the-green-energy-cornucopia/
Date Written: 14/09/2017
Year Published: 2017
Resource Type: Article
Cx Number: CX21410
A growing body of research has debunked overblown claims of a green-energy bonanza.
The 100-percent dream has become dogma among liberals and mainstream climate activists. Serious energy scholars who publish analyses that expose the idea's serious weaknesses risk being condemned as stooges of the petroleum industry or even as climate deniers. Jacobson has even suggested that he might take legal action against NOAA scientist Christopher Clack and twenty coauthors whose critical evaluation of his work was published by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in June.
Jacobson's team and others cling to the idea of 100-percent conversion because they (rightly) want to eliminate fossil and nuclear energy, and they foresee that any future supply gap left by a shortfall in renewable generation is going to be filled by those dirty sources. That is indeed stated or implied by many of the opposing analyses, including the Clack study.
But the two sides also share other basic assumptions. They both seek to satisfy all future demand for energy solely through industrial production, technological improvements, efficiency, and markets, without any strict regulatory limits on the total quantity of energy consumed in production and consumption. The 100-percenters believe such a scenario is achievable while their critics conclude that it is not, but they agree on the ultimate goal: a permanent high-energy economy.