The Manhattan Institute reckons: ‘By 2050, with current plans, the quantity of worn-out solar panels—much of it nonrecyclable—will constitute double the tonnage of all today’s global plastic waste, along with over 3 million tons per year of unrecyclable plastics from worn-out wind turbine blades. By 2030, more than 10 million tons per year of batteries will become garbage.’
Before then, all that future waste has to be manufactured, largely from mined materials. Is the world ready for this?
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You think those baby unicorns grow on trees? Better think again, says Michael Walsh @ The Pipeline.
“Green” energy, in fact, comes with a very high price tag as this report from the Manhattan Institute makes clear.
As policymakers have shifted focus from pandemic challenges to economic recovery, infrastructure plans are once more being actively discussed, including those relating to energy.
As policymakers have shifted focus from pandemic challenges to economic recovery, infrastructure plans are once more being actively discussed, including those relating to energy. Green energy advocates are doubling down on pressure to continue, or even increase, the use of wind, solar power, and electric cars. Left out of the discussion is any serious consideration of the broad environmental and supply-chain implications of renewable energy.
As I explored in a previous paper, “The New Energy Economy: An Exercise in Magical Thinking,” many enthusiasts believe things that are not possible when it comes to the physics of fueling society, not least the magical belief that “clean-tech” energy can echo the velocity of the progress of digital technologies. It cannot.
This paper turns to a different reality: all energy-producing machinery must be fabricated from materials extracted from the earth. No energy system, in short, is actually “renewable,” since all machines require the continual mining and processing of millions of tons of primary materials and the disposal of hardware that inevitably wears out. Compared with hydrocarbons, green machines entail, on average, a 10-fold increase in the quantities of materials extracted and processed to produce the same amount of energy.
Here’s the paper by Mark P. Mills: “Mines, Minerals and ‘Green’ Energy: A Reality Check.”
via Tallbloke’s Talkshop
August 5, 2020 at 03:21AM