Get ready for 24-30% reduction in cost of wind power by 2030

Survey of 163 experts sees turbine size going up, costs coming down.

A paper published in Nature Energy analyzed the opinions of 163 wind power experts from around the globe and found that they expect the cost of wind energy to fall even further. Those experts said that by 2030, both onshore and offshore wind turbines will get bigger, leading to additional cost reductions and smoother energy generation. MORE


Yet Another Benefit of Renewable Energy: It Uses Practically No Water Compared to Fossil Fuels

The Energy Information Administration (EIA) recently highlighted a little-discussed benefit of using renewables like wind and solar to produce electricity: Unlike most power sources, they require “almost no water.”

According to the latest U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) data from 2015, 41 percent of the water used in America is for power generation. The next highest use is irrigation for agriculture, accounting for 37 percent of U.S. water use (and close to two-thirds of that is consumptive).

The Union of Concerned Scientists was raising this alarm in 2012 when the nonprofit created an infographic focused on the “energy-water collision,” which “refers to the range of issues that can crop up where our water resources and our power sector interact.” That can include increased competition for dwindling water sources and problems when the water going into or out of power plants is too warm. MORE


Peak Energy & Resources, Climate Change, and the Preservation of Knowledge

The remaining oil is poor quality–and Canada’s tar sands produce the world’s dirtiest energy– and the energy required to mine this remote oil is so great that more and more energy goes into oil production itself, leaving far less available to fuel the rest of civilization.

This is the scariest chart I’ve ever seen.  It shows civilization is likely to crash within the next 20 years. I thought oil depletion curve would be symmetric (blue), but this chart reveals it’s more likely to be a cliff (gray) when you factor in Energy Returned on Energy Invested (EROEI). MORE