Imagine a world powered by clean, ultra cheap energy. That world is fast becoming our reality. For those people who have been involved in energy issues for a while, and for companies where energy is a significant cost factor, this may seem like pie-in-the-sky idealism and wishful thinking. But sometimes the people closest to an issue are amongst the last to see disruptive change taking place right in front of their noses.
For about two years now, the TomorrowToday team has been predicting that by 2030 we will live in a world where electricity will be free and clean.
This is not as crazy as it sounds. In Germany, on 8 May 2016, electricity prices went negative as consumers were paid to consume electricity (read the story here). Most of the supply came from renewable sources.
With new sources of energy being built, like ITER, and rapid advances in the efficiency of solar cells and batteries, alternative energy sources are becoming increasingly viable and available. And now we have some of the world’s richest people creating a Breakthrough Energy Coalition to look for miracle energy ideas. We are rapidly approaching a tipping point, where our access to cheap and clean energy is no longer a dream, but a reality.
Here are a few charts that prove that the revolution is not going to happen sometime soon. It’s happening now.
Firstly, from The Economist of 30 Sep 2016, here’s a moving graphic that shows the installations of solar panels in the San Fernando Valley, California from 2005 to 2015. It’s a remarkable story of growth.
Then, there are six charts posted by Green Tech Media that show the reductions in cost and uptake in technologies – and they are dramatic. And they are now being driven by market forces as well as a sense of ethics and desire for sustainability.
“While the implementation of the Paris Agreement or the Clean Power Plan could strengthen and quicken the uptake of clean energy, prices have dropped so low that adoption is now increasingly based on economics, according to a new report from the Department of Energy, 2015 Revolution… Now.“
Have a look at the Green Tech Media site for more information. My favourite charts to prove the point that we are reaching a tipping are the following two:
We are definitely experiencing dramatic shifts in the energy sector that will change the world forever. Free and clean energy is indeed a possibility in the near future.