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Alternatives Aren’t Ready, Demand Management Is

Most people with functioning brain cells, even the most ardent climate change deniers, accept that at some point in the future mankind will have to find a viable alternative to fossil fuels. They are, after all, a finite resource and the rate of consumption continues to increase. This simple fact has led to a lot of money, both public and private, being invested in the search for an alternative. Despite that though, and a plethora of stories about how close we are to a breakthrough in various areas, the reality is that we are still a very long way from “replacing” fossil fuels; realists understand that this will not happen in our lifetimes no matter how hard some may wish for it.

The most promising area is still probably using the ultimate source of all energy on our planet, the sun, to generate the electricity that we demand. If solar power truly succeeds then, along with advances in electric cars being spearheaded by the likes of Tesla (TSLA), dependence on fossil fuels could quickly become a thing of the past. In order for that to happen, though, several problems must be overcome. First, cost will have to come down even further. Increases in efficiency, both in terms of production and storage are also sorely needed. At the moment that lack of efficiency means that huge swathes of land would have to be covered with solar farms to supply the world’s energy needs and the relatively high cost makes that an impractical proposition.

For the foreseeable…

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