August 26, 2013 · 0 Comments
From: Alice Slater
Although Eduardo Porter dismisses “environmental activists” promoting sun and wind as safe alternatives to deadly fossil fuels as unworthy of our trust that a timely energy transition is possible, numerous studies demonstrate how to make the transformation, given a level playing field and the political will. In 2009, Scientific American, for example, published a plan to power 100% of the planet by 2030 with only solar, wind and water renewables, calling for millions of wind turbines, water machines and solar installations to accomplish that task. The Stanford University authors remind us that we have achieved such massive transformations before. During World War II the U.S retooled its auto factories to produce 300,000 aircraft with another 486,000 produced abroad. By 2030, we could build 3.8 million windmills to provide 51% of the world’s energy demand which would take up less than 50 square kilometers (smaller than Manhattan). They assure us this is manageable since the world manufactures 73 million cars and lights trucks every year.
In wake of the tragic ongoing catastrophe at Fukushima, and the utter lack of any known solution to the intractable problem of storing nuclear waste, which remains lethal for 240,000 years, hardly a mere “bugaboo” as described by Porter, it would greatly benefit Times readers, if a factual debate was presented to the public, instead of bare assertions, unsupported by research or valid evidence.
New York, NY