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Archive for the tag “energy transition”

Vaclav Smil on Energy Transitions

Published 25 March 2013 – Energy transitions: a future without fossil energies is desirable, and it is eventually inevitable, but the road from today’s overwhelmingly fossil-fueled civilization to a new global energy system based on efficient conversions of renewable flows will be neither fast nor cheap. Distinguished Professor and author Vaclav Smil explores technological transitions of past, present and future that are critical for understanding how to shift to a low carbon future.

Vaclav Smil presents as part of WGSI’s Energy 2030 Summit (June 5-9, 2011).

[] – Can We Live again in 1964’s Energy World?

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US Steel Production Required For Energy Transition

Let’s do another simple calculation of what it would take to set up an alternative energy base. From Wikipedia we learn that the US produced 88.6 million ton of steel in 2012. We saw earlier that a 5 MW windturbine needs 700 ton of steel in total, price ca. $700/ton. Three days ago we blogged that in order to replace 40% of the US current electricity production by wind, as well as power an EV for every car currently driving on US roads, it would require some 250,000 3 MW wind turbines. Or 150,000 5 MW wind turbines. The rest of the electricity could be generated by 40% solar and 20% hydro. These 150,000 turbines would require 105 million ton of steel, or a little more than one year US steel production. If we assume ASPO to be correct in stating that between now and 2040 global oil production will be reduced by 50%, than it is not difficult to conclude that a transition avoiding collapse is not a priori impossible.


Energy Transition – ASPO 2012

Moderately upbeat story by UK’s Jeremy Leggett about the possibility of a successfull energy transition. Nice insider information of the ‘Yes minister‘ quality of British politics. Leggett believes in technology. We would like to add that we have no choice but to believe in technological solutions. Leggett worked for big oil and is a trained geologist.

[presentation slides]
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