Several countries, including Scotland and the Philippines, have recently announced impressive plans to obtain all of their power from renewable energy.
What are the major barriers that countries face in order to reach 100 percent renewable energy — is this goal always achievable or desirable?
October 18, 2013Kevin Smith says, "Thus, 100 percent renewable goals will not be the best solution."
Geoff Kinsey says, "An approach that focuses on high penetration (greater than 50 percent) of renewables will provide a more effective path to a sustainable energy future."
John Deasey says, "the 100 percent targets of countries such as Scotland and the Philippines tend to look like well-meant pipedreams."
Tony Clifford says, "Getting to 100 percent renewables is certainly a laudable goal, but political leaders should plot a course that makes economic sense."
How collectively uninspirational. The question isn't can we reach 100% rather it's when will we reach 100% and how painful will that inevitable transition be. Clearly that pain will vary with location. Some countries are blessed with abundant renewable resources and already have the political will to make the transition early. Those countries will be the winners. Others, such as the US, are similarly blessed with ample renewable resources but lack the resolve to act effectively due to the excessive political influence of those profiting from the status quo. They will learn form the winners and soon catch up. Finally there are those without adequate renewable resources to make the transition and they will continue to be dependent on imported energy and will end up as the the economic losers. It is from these pockets of unfortunate circumstances that the transition will turn chaotic if it is left purely to the marketplace.