energy efficiency, sustainability, green buildings, solar, hybrid cars and alternate fuels.

"A society built on green design, sustainable energy and closed loop systems, a civilization afloat on a cloud of efficient, non-toxic, recyclable technology." ~~Alex Nikolai Steffan

2.08.2016

WE CAN NO LONGER RETROFIT FAILED ENERGY SYSTEMS

Alex Steffen says the time to reimagine sustainability is overdue: The idea that sustainability is an add-on—something we do to make already functional systems more responsible—is one of these relics of the past.

We can no longer retrofit failed systems.

Sustainability now demands wholesale systems change and demands huge disruptions to the status quo. We need massive, rapid transitions in how we power our societies, build our cities, meet our basic needs and work with natural systems to grow our food, provide our water and maintain planetary stability.
Energy, the basic foundation of our prosperous lifestyles, is moving away from centralized power plants and closer to the customer. 


Since consumers choose winners and losers in radically different ways than do utilities or the other incumbents of the energy industry, how new energy systems emerge can potentially demonstrate a shift from a centralized to a more distributed energy system architecture as a part of the worldwide drive toward lower-carbon energy.  The potential for developing countries to "leap-frog conventional power grids to consumer energy is becoming a reality.  

The Tesla Powerwall, a stationary battery for homeowners that features essentially the same battery technology as Tesla’s cars, or something like it can make energy storage a reality, at least for the first world.  

Innovations like distributed solar power make sense.  We can either choose to keep trying to 'retrofit' the old systems, with large utilities continuing to impose increasing fees on individual solar power generation, while trying to figure out how to continue their power monopoly or we can move forward to micro-grid systems, solar panel leasing, distributed solar, and efficient battery storage.  We can embrace wind and wave power and continually seek emerging efficient ways to rapidly convert systems from carbon dependency.  

It is time to reimagine sustainability. Power monopolies can go the way of the dinosaurs who created all this fossil fuel to begin with.    






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