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Friday, 19 August 2016

Efficiency + renewables = declining fossil fuels

Renewable energy is clearly gaining ground:
Futures Forum: Modern energy >>> the world is shifting toward renewables

As laid out by the New Economics Foundation:


Efficiency + renewables = declining fossil fuels

AUGUST 19, 2016 // BY: GRIFFIN CARPENTER

Electricity from fossil fuels is in steep decline (dark blue) thanks to efficiency gains reducing energy demand (shown by total sum) and the rise of renewables (green). In the next year, fossil fuels might represent just half of their peak as well as half of the grid mix.

















In other news

  1. Retraining fossil fuel workers for the age of renewables

If coal is on the way out, and solar is on the way up, how difficult will it be to transition workers from one energy industry to the other? A new article in Energy Economics tackles this question, and the conclusions are positive. Research reveals the cost of retraining American coal workers to work in solar would be small, and many workers could expect a pay rise – although culture, geography, and who should foot the bill present challenges. In the UK, similar questions about retraining North Sea oil workers to work on offshore wind projects have arisen and are explored in our work on a Blue New Deal.
  1. Oil major debt spirals

The growing debt of the Oil Majors – the six big global oil and gas companies – was already ringing alarm bells. Debt was at a low of $13 billion in mid-2008 before quadrupling to $71 billion in 2014. Now, with oil prices low, their debt has doubled in two years to $138 billion. To date, the Oil Majors have resisted major changes like cutting dividends, but many analysts don’t see how this can continue. Yet more bad news for the Majors came last week as the IEA forecasts continued low demand for oil in the short-term due to a “dimmer macroeconomic outlook”.
  1. Air travel emissions
With air travel growing at 5% per year, and no obvious low or zero emission fuel, aviation could consume a quarter of the 1.5C global carbon budget by 2050, according to analysis by CarbonBrief. At the same time, only 5% of the world’s population have ever travelled by air. For the UK, the Airports Commission proposed a high and escalating carbon tax, likely higher than the price of the flight itself, and we’ve proposed a Frequent Flier Levy
ISSUES

Energy round-up: the age of the renewables | New Economics Foundation
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