Does the global Sustainable Energy Transition pace need to accelerate? If yes, how should we acceler14 Jan 2014 |
Energy availability is strongly coupled with wealth – one could say that wealth is energy access. Our current wealth including infrastructure will be much less valuable with insufficient (very expensive) energy to operate (consider the value of a gasoline car if gasoline prices quadruple). Renewable energy resources are capable of providing long-term energy streams but at a significant upfront investment and they are be compatible with much of the energy using infrastructure today (especially transport). The effort of installing the renewable energy base and retrofitting the infrastructure for compatibility and efficiency is costly in terms of energy and as a consequence it is better to be undertaken now that there is surplus energy available from fossil fuels. IF we wait until fossil fuels become too expensive it will be too late for such investments and we will have effectively condemned our future generations to an age of energy poverty in a rapidly deteriorating climate.