Kim Hill: What’s Wrong with Renewable Energy?

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2 kommentarer till Kim Hill: What’s Wrong with Renewable Energy?

  1. The sting is definitely left until the tail of this article.
    ”The emissions reductions that renewables intend to achieve could be easily accomplished by improving the efficiency of existing coal plants, at a much lower cost. ”
    Ok… Point taken… but are you deep green or do you have black edges, Kim Hill?

    (Start with some hopium) The renewable energy of the ”future” is not necessarily what is on the ”market” now, labeled as renewable energy. There are renewable energies which are so low tech that they are hardly used, like basic direct solar cooking devices, small wind turbines, wave pumps and waterwheels. There is so much technology created by people from all walks of life which has never been fully developed or distributed because it cannot thrive within the fossil fuel enabled corporate/industrial complex.
    Even though we have much greener and simpler renewable energy available than fossil fuel, I very much doubt it will be developed within this ”civilisation” , it will take the crash of the industrial complex before that can happen. Get small, grow sustainable, eat local and get innovating; but to do that without stopping the main cause of climate damage is like putting bandaids on wounds while a crazed axe murderer is in the same room.
    I agree with you that ”renewables can never replace fossil fuel infrastructure” and that they will not stop catastrophic climate change from wiping out most species and the vast majority of humans, but to remove fossil fuel enabled damage from the system could. Even if our own attempts at mitigation are pathetic, we can’t tell what the biosphere itself can do to adjust and repair. Leave fossil fuel in the ground.
    Do you really think that fossil fuel can have any role to play in future energy production or are you just being a Devil’s Advocate? As far as I’m concerned, every lump of coal we burn might be the last straw which breaks the biosphere’s back.
    You state obvious facts in that ”Each stage leaves behind a trail of devastation: habitat destruction, water contamination, colonization, toxic waste, slave labour, greenhouse gas emissions, wars, and corporate profits.” But it doesn’t end there. We have so much metal, other minerals, plastic and silica in use on the surface already that there is no need for more mining. We can recycle all we need to make new products without continuing the toxic cycle.
    You state that solar panels and wind turbines last around 20 to 30 years and then need replacing. For those of us who, by principle, try to live by using the least damaging pathways, a small, off grid solar or wind system is not a bad option when combined with ascetic abstention. It saves us from burning too much timber or dung. 20 to 30 years is quite long enough to work out whether our children are going to live to reach the age we are now.
    The ”easy” path to the future involves not replacing our population, our houses, our clothes or any non essential goods. We have enough ”stuff” to last us all a lifetime. We must bring in rationing of food and water and develop sustainable agricultural systems if we are able to. We will let our industries and infrstructure run down except for the production of basic renewably energised tools for transport and individual survival. In fact, we need to go into the type of wartime style mobilisation that this group are suggesting.…/paris-climate-talks-and-15c…
    I don’t think we’re going to manage to do it the ”easy” way. I think that most humans will keep scrabbling for consumer bliss and will therefore complete the total crash of the planetary biosphere. We have, indeed, left our ”renewable revolution” too late. If the fossil fuel industry hadn’t made such a good job of corrupting our politicians, destroying the credibility of our top scientists and subverting innovation in the 1980s, we may have succeeded, but now it seems too little, too late.
    When the system crashes, and the crash is well underway already, it will not crash evenly in all places. Maybe some humans will even manage to keep a basic, low tech sustainable life somewhere on Earth. I hope that it will be the remnants of the indigenous peoples who manage to survive by their very toughness and flexibility. They will not be sourcing their energy from the grid.
    Back to coal… There is no such thing as clean coal, clean tar sands or clean fracked unconventional gas. These industries must be shut down immediately. If under a strict mobilisation regime, we use the remnants of our existing conventional oil and gas reserves to transition to lower tech renewables, then it wouldn’t be a bad idea. It’s a bit of hopium for those of us who need it. Personally, I have very little hope and a lot of remorse. I will spend the rest of my days fighting all new fossil fuel projects and trying to personally shut down the coal industry for good. Join me. Every act of civil disobedience might well save another species. We are not likely to know if it works, but we owe it to the world to die in the attempt.

    • Sundazed skriver:

      Thank you for that reply. However, perhaps you did post it on the wrong blog? I have merely re-blogged this blogpost entry on my site and I think your post should defiantly be able to be read on the original blog as well.

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