Fixing Energy and Transportation or Use Environmental Judo

Changing energy and transportation in the US in an expensive way will not by itself deflect world greenhouse gas emissions. It will cost about $50-200 per ton of CO2 doing it that way. And it will take many decades.

The US emits over 5 billion tons of CO2 emissions per year. The world emits 37 billion tons of CO2. The world CO2 equivalent emissions are 55 billion tons per year.

The world is increasing by 2% per year. This means the world will add 7 billion tons of CO2 emissions by 2030 and about 10 billion tons of CO2 equivalent. If US goes to zero by 2030 then the world will still be at 39 billion tons of CO2 and 58 billion tons of CO2 equivalent.

Solar and wind have far less power in the winter so it would not work year round without a lot of natural gas backup, plus grid rebuild and loads of batteries for daily fluctuations.

80% nuclear and hydro with 20% solar and wind could provide the US with clean energy. I think the most affordable way would be to mass produce nuclear power and keep current nuclear which is 20% of electricity. The existing nuclear power should get extended uprates using Lightbridge metal fuel. Uprates could affordably add about 4 to 6% to nuclear production.

China and South Korea build nuclear power at about $2 to $2.5 per KW. This means it is about $4 to $5 billion for a one-gigawatt nuclear plant.

The US would need to revamp the Nuclear Regulatory Commission which has not approved a new reactor type since being formed in the 1970s from what was called the AEC. The AEC approved the prior versions of all of the boiler water and pressure water nuclear reactors that are used today in the USA.

If US can get smaller nuclear plant costs in the range of current Chinese and South Korean reactors then a nuclear construction wave would make sense. The Westinghouse eVinci 25MW reactor might enable this. The eVince could be mass produced like airplanes from factories. It would take 20,000 small 25 MWe reactors. If they are built at $2 per KW then they would be $50 Million each. Twenty thousand would cost $1 trillion. The first one could be operational in 2025. The full buildout could be done by 2040.

Thorcon is developing mass producable nuclear molten salt reactors which could cost $1 billion per GW. This would lower a large scale build out for the US to $500 billion.

Germany is spending loads of money on solar and wind but their emissions have not gone down in a major way. France and Switzerland are doing the best for wealthy countries on a per capita basis of CO2.

Switzerland has 4.7 tons per capita, which is one-third of US per capita emissions. Switzerland Nuclear power accounted for 36.4% of the nation’s gross electricity generation of 68.3 TWh, while 57.9% was produced by hydroelectric plants and 5.7% came from conventional thermal power stations and non-hydro renewable energy sources.

Environmental Judo Fixes Are 1% of the Cost of Energy Fixes

Go to electric cars and trucks. Trucks bigger bang for the buck. China has half of the worlds trucks. China will probably do this by 2030 to fix their pollution problem.

Fixing air pollution particulate and soot emissions is 20 times cheaper than the CO2 fix for changing energy and transportation. It is more expensive than the tree, iron fertilization offset.

The world should fix energy and transportation but take about 50 years to do it with lower cost solutions. It would be faster to store CO2 in the wood of new trees or in sea life that dies and goes to the bottom of the ocean for thousands of years. This could be done for 10 cents to $1 per ton of CO2.

– grow 1.2 trillion more trees (offset 300 billion tons for 6 years of world emissions), in 20 years cut them down and grow another batch of trees (plant with drones. $5 billion per year for 50 billion trees per year) or $250 billion per year planting old fashioned way.
– grow a lot of kelp in the oceans. Increase from current 25 miilion tons to billions of tons, use them in a way that does not release the CO2
– iron fertilization of the ocean (1000 iron fertilizations with 1000 tons of iron each for a total of 1 million tons per year). $2-10 billion per year

SOURCES- Wikipedia, Westinghouse interview by Brian Wang
Written By Brian Wang,

53 thoughts on “Fixing Energy and Transportation or Use Environmental Judo”

  1. Ukraine and South Africa both gave up their nukes during a regime change – white South Africa divested itself of its weapons before it became black-ruled South Africa. Ukraine. It’s not just racism, it’s the in-club wanting to keep power to itself.

  2. Nice, except the random racism card founders on the way that the nuclear club has shut down the nuclear weapons programs of Ukraine and Apartheid South Africa.
    Skin colour is not the issue.

  3. In 2019, if you want to dirty bomb a modern city just use gluten, peanuts and GMO rape seed oil. That would cause enough of the population to panic/evacuate/cry/self-harm that the city would be crippled.

    The fact that the rest of the population were laughing themselves stupid and couldn’t function either would be icing on the cake.

  4. 16 weeks? I don’t think so. Cost for Nuclear have gone up. To bring the cost down you would have to build a lot of units. That isn’t going to happen here.

  5. I believe in miracles, as the song goes. Will require total re-think on how to provide power and all the other infrastructure. Just the raw materials needed will run out if places like Lagos are developed like today’s tech.

  6. I don’t think you can barr miracles.

    For Lagos to have 300 million people without some catastrophe intervening is going to take a few miracles right there.

    Not saying you can’t reach 300 million in a vast urban conglomeration. But to do so without better-than-modern-Japan level electricity supply would result in who knows what sort of system collapse, plague outbreak etc.

  7. At some level proliferation is replicating 1940s technology. If North Korea can’t feed its people but can make nuclear weapons that is saying something. So using proliferation as an excuse to argue against nuclear energy is not just ahistorical (except India) but shortchanges the political efforts that have in fact limited proliferation.
    As to the costs of accidents, they are pure masochism.

  8. 25 MWe plants will yield 50-60 MW of waste heat. That’s a good size for central heating districts. Cities in cold climates on large bodies of water for summer waste heat disposal are ideal candidates for CHD cogeneration. In the US Boston, Chicago, and NYC come to mind. Any building with boilers near ground level would be relative easy to connect.

  9. And on a larger take of the same question, G. K. O’Neill has offered a new perspective that upends profound assumptions and even gut reactions that most people simply cannot shake. Musk, the late man of few words Hawking, Buzz Aldrin, on and on. “Thou shalt live on a planet” seems to be automatic! Both Bezos and I have been fighting this absurdity for over 40 years, and it is totally astonishing how people simply cannot think about it.
    Anyway, O’Neill plan sez Moon and asteroids for material, but live in (what I call) O’Neill Space, which is different from planets in Space. So going to Moon is vital emergency for biosphereic survival, to get started. Long argument about Moon first v Mars only is finally resolved, even tho for non-O’Neill reasons.
    ‘colonize the Moon first’.
    Pay for it with Lunar Solar Power.

  10. Please pay special attn to pg 13, which sez a part of Lunar Solar Power, the redirectors, can also be used for Earth to Earth power beaming. The distances are even less than Solar Power Sats, let alone LSP, so the transmitters can be quite small, but use the same receivers (rectennae) as Space Solar, so no long transmission lines at all!
    Also, H2 economy just stores the energy in a tank rather than needing to keep a balance of “live” current. This helps all wind, solar, etc type systems.

  11. After the first couple of dozen actual dirty bombs, people might notice that they don’t actually have much effect. It’s not that easy to aerosolise solid uranium oxide with additives, and then it would probably only taint a block or two. Easier to stockpile talcum powder, and tell everyone it’s anthrax.

  12. Why is nuclear proliferation ‘the bigger issue’. Back in the days of George Bush the Younger, we were supposed to be worried about the ‘Axis of Evil’ – Iran, Iraq, and North Korea – which between them could deploy zero nuclear weapons. The eight nuclear armed states, that we presumably didn’t have to worry about, had about 14,000. Now there are nine – North Korea promoted itself. Iraq got stomped. Iran is in a Shroedinger’s Cat situation between those possibilities. Is the world any safer, or less safe, for the change ? Doubtful.
    When the ‘Axis of Evil’ consisted of Stalin and Mao, it was a bit more plausible. Now Russia and China are just accused of email piracy and sharp trading, but we’re supposed to be in a life-or-death struggle to stop any more brown or yellow people getting the same weapons. My God, what would happen if Venezuela got the Bomb ? We couldn’t say that ‘all options are on the table’ anymore !

  13. How much copper, steel, and other raw minerals are necessary to electrify 2 billion more people by 2050 in places like Africa/sub-continent? Just to get the African continent to 50% of European standards will require roughly 50 million tons of copper production per year. The total copper mine capacity globally is 20mt. I guess dig up all of Chile and move it to Africa. Africa will need about 50 million tons of bitumen yearly, or about 50% more than current global production. There are no new plants being built today, so that needs to be done too. Now let’s add cement, steel, aluminum, wood, plastics etc. Just the energy to set up the infrastructure for electrification and roads will require so much energy it makes the power needed for BEVs seem like a tick on a horse’s rear end.

  14. Now that’s an interesting idea! yeah, people in the west tend to not at all understand what is required. How do you increase the global electricity generation by 5x in 30 years in places that doesn’t have it? Not with windmills, that is for sure. Just the cabling required to transmit electricity is estimated to require about 100 million tons of additional copper production per year (current is about 18mt). There aren’t enough copper mines on the planet to make this equation work.

  15. see my comment below. It isn’t a priority to Africans nor to Indians no matter what they publish to make it look like they are on board. btw, that “plan” by the Indian government is just that, a plan. India has a million or so odd bureaucrats who make plans every day. They absolutely need to eliminate air pollution, and either put scrubbers on their coal plants, or switch to natgas, or go nuclear and hydrogen massively. Either way, they need electricity, 24/7. THAT is the first priority and takes decades to build out. Driving battery powered cars, or PHEV or hydrogen is a secondary luxury.

    I know you aren’t trolling and appreciate you mentioning that. But you need to remember where most of these countries are in terms of development. They are light years away with massive urban problems and general electrification issues. A decent Chinese made compact vehicle that sells for $10k and gets 50 mpg on a tank of regular is “good enough” – 20/30 years from now.

  16. OK I’ll relent. I guess anything can happen by 2050, including hydrogen fuel cell tech that makes BEV obsolete. BEV will require extensive and reliable power gen and charging infrastructure. Africa’s population growth will be in the big mega cities. Lagos, Africa’s largest city at 14 million is expected to reach 300 million (yeah, you read this right) by 2050. Barring some miracle, they won’t be able to charge the 30 million or so vehicles. The first priority will be to keep the lights on and basic services, and electrify households and get rid of the ubiquitous cookers. That type of buildout in itself is a multi-decade effort. I don’t think electric vehicles will be a priority.

  17. Yeah I’m not going to be OK with “Africa can’t use BEVs by 2050”

    I disagree with people claiming complete turnover to BEVs by 2030 or something, but from now to 2050 is a LOT further, with a LOT more battery tech development, and a LOT more chance for oil to become too expensive and electricity to become cheap and easy to produce.

  18. Synthetic fuel has been made, but I don’t know of any that did not start with some sort of fossil fuel carbon.
    eg. Gas to liquid. Coal to liquid.

    You are still adding that carbon to the atmosphere.

    The advantage is that you don’t need to have access to an oil field (the current ruling class of China’s concern) rather than you don’t want to produce CO2 (the current ruling class of the USA’s concern).

    (Europe has both concerns. Suxtobethem.)

    Yes, there have been tiny little “it worked on a couple of kg in the lab” projects taking CO2 out of the atmosphere or ocean, but nothing that is close to viable as a commercial product. Unless you can point to something that shows otherwise?

  19. That would be /kWh-t, not e. On site heat, so no transmission costs. But supplies no elect.

  20. I think this is the best summary of the SMR issues that I’ve seen.

    OK, it’s the ONLY summary I’ve seen, but it seems to be good.

  21. The “conservation is cheapest” argument does bring up the reflex response of “well why hasn’t everyone already done it then?”

    Because conservation is mostly smaller scale, and can be done by each separate entity rather than requiring a coordinated response. So we would expect that all those tasty low hanging fruit should have been picked already.
    Unless there is something holding it up, in which case what?

  22. You are right, the newer reactor are much safer although I am not sure how your calculation cover dead zones and environmental damage. But the bigger issue here is nuclear proliferation.

  23. Yup works good if all you are doing is sealing leaky windows or enforcing new building standards.

    However when you start reinsulating or replacing windows you are in the $20/Watt average about 15 times the cost of Candu’s or Korean/Chinese nukes.

  24. Since wind and solar require 16 weeks of storage to cover long term low wind/solar events at $100/kWh that would add $800/W avg to the $8/W avg cost of wind and solar.

    The last 7 Candu’s were built for $2.7/W avg in $2019 in 4 years and less. Maybe we should ask how they did it?

    Wind and solar – Big Oil’s favorite scam for its army of idiots.

  25. Yup imagine what the cost would be if fossil fuels had to pay for the 10 million folk they murder every year with air pollution, and the cleanup of the cubic miles of toxic waste they dump into the air and water every year.

  26. You likely have never heard of synthetic fuel and chemical production using high temp nuke reactors like China’s new HTGR. I was at an INL presentation claiming it was a no brainer based on their research to date.

    Shell’s Qatar GTL plant has been producing synthetic avgas for years now out of natural gas.

    Since wind and solar require 16 weeks of storage to cover long term low wind/solar events at $100/kWh that would add $800/W avg to the $8/W avg cost of wind and solar.

    The last 7 Candu’s were built for $2.7/W avg in $2019 in 4 years and less. Maybe we should ask how they did it?

    Lookup “deep decarbonization of the electric power sector insights from recent literature”

  27. As an oft demonstrated spokesperson for Big Oil, you of course would be unaware that swimming pool type reactors can and are being built to replace coal district heating systems at .5 cents /kWh – no turbine island needed.

  28. I know you are unaware but fossil power now backing up wind/solar murders close to 10 million annually. Imagine what the insurance would be on that if made them pay.

  29. Thank you for the insight, appreciated. IMO nuclear is something that should be more widely used, made safer and more affordable. I am just trying to determine why other countries can use it safely and affordably and the country that developed the technology the most seems to be falling behind on those criteria. Considering the energy density of nuclear it should be a no brainer with the right designs and PR campaign.

  30. If you socialized all meltdown costs to all nuclear electricity ever generated into a world shared pool it would cost about 0.8 cents per kWh. Private would cost double that assuming you could find a pool large enough (you won’t ).The reality is no private entity in the world will never create a nuclear energy insurance pool large enough. So yes you’re right that it isn’t safe enough based on current realistic underwriting limits and the current fleet, but a new Gen 3+ reactor is going to cost less to insure than a hypothetical world average of 1.6 cents per kWh (that average still includes Gen 1 reactors like RBMK).

  31. You’re implying there’s coercion in a demand response bid block. There isn’t, it is entirely voluntary.
    You really kicked that apocalyptic strawman’s head clean off!
    IMO alarmism like you just engaged in doesn’t advance anything of value.

  32. It is the most scalable per your declaration while renewable energy is the most scaling. Simply said, if the United States is to go 80% nuclear energy, the world is also going to move in that direction and we don’t have a safe enough nuclear energy for that.

  33. Conservation, AKA as keeping energy expensive, is not going to enable the brilliant future envisioned by NBF readers. Conservation will lead to stagnation and the further consolidation of wealth (further development of castes) – a slow period – not exactly a dark age. Conservation makes sense with parks and wildlife and water use when water is scarce. A smart grid that shuts down my air conditioner, isn’t very smart IMO. We should aim higher than what amounts to accepting rolling brownouts.

  34. You forgot that a meltdown can cost 100s of billions of dollars in property damage? 1.4 trillion dollars is like 350,000 human lives worth at $4 million (Australia price) or 8x time that at Turkey policy levels (half a million). 28 deaths per TWh at the Turkey price based on cumulative 100,000 TWh for nuclear.
    You’re going to have shut down every single Gen 1 reactor in the world before you can even begin to convince a lot of people. Not unreasonably scared people but well informed ones.

    Step 1. put a price on air quality impact (cap and trade)
    Step 2. get a coalition of countries (must include China) including most emissions and set a carbon price of around $20 per tonne and gradually crank it up. Punish non-joiners with border tariffs.
    Step 3. make nuclear pay for all of their own insurance

    Link for Chernobyl at $700 billion
    Link for Fukushima similar amount

  35. Well, don’t blame Brian for the 1 cent/kWh-e, that is profit making price for Criswell LSP. Actual cost much less, if you own your own receiver or have invested.
    Fusion should not be accused of promising much less than 10 cents, and that is highly speculative. Central plants need power lines. pg 13 has a solution for even that.

  36. Brian’s abiding belief in totally unrealistic projections for cheap fission and fusion energy are basically a mental illness.
    You can’t even build a lone steam turbine island that runs on frigging magic for 1 cent per kilowatt-hour.

  37. Nuclear technology is immediately ready for wide use. It is actually one of the most scalable technologies for electricity generation in existence. I’ll go ahead and say the most scalable.
    It’s just way too expensive for the vast majority of use cases. And that’s the single most important consideration. Cost is king.

  38. Why would you doubt mostly BEVs in Africa by 2050?! I’m not trolling you – that really boggles my mind you’d make that prediction. By then they’d be better in all ways with a lower cost of ownership. Even people who need some long range would use range extenders and use only like 20% of the fuel.
    And India has started a 5 year moratorium starting when the current ones are finished building in 2022, which will continue indefinitely at current price curves for alternatives.
    Even air traffic is trending towards electric as the “fuel”. You’re way too pessimistic about Africa in my opinion.

  39. Conservation can cost 10 cents per nameplate watt (as opposed to Vogtle new nuclear build at 120 times that or new solar in Los Angeles at 29 times that before subsidy) and 0.8 cents per kWh for bidding in demand response.
    If we allow market forces to work there’s a lot of insanely cheap low hanging fruit to take advantage of, conservation included. Conservation doesn’t have to be swapping out AC and heat in a home for say a more efficient air source heat pump. You of course improve the cheapest things first.

  40. We will see, but that’s not really how the learning curve (aka Wright Scaling) works though. Every cumulative doubling of the amount you build reduces price about 22%. There’s already 400 GWe of nuclear reactors out there.
    And not all “pieces” of something get the same learning curve. The marginal capital cost of a nuclear reactor is going to be about double that of a coal plant assuming you ignore R&D costs and getting through regulatory red tape. And 50% of what is in a nuclear power plant is in already in a coal plant (2,204 GWe existing). So you’d only be reducing by 22% the 50% that’s not already in a bunch of other thermal plants. So 11%. Then your final costs are modified by the relative exchange rates of what country built them (whether the currency is overvalued or undervalued – see the Big Mac Index graph for info on how undervalued the Chinese yuan is for example and why nuclear plants cost half as much as elsewhere).
    A lot of experience with the learning curve means you’re probably being too aggressively optimistic on what the first 10 GWe will bring in price improvements. And you’ll still not drop that 50% of coal-like tech by 22% (so 11%) until you build 2,204 GWe of it.

  41. Step 1 for nuclear is new legislation specifying that nuclear need only be 10x safer than gas plants. The 1000x safer standard we have today is ridiculously expensive – which means we get more gas plants, and more dead people from gas plants. Framed positively, say that every energy technology has to meet the same deaths per MWh standard.

    Step 2 is to get rid of the 24/7 on-site militia requirement. We can do this by moving weapons grade waste offsite immediately and not delivering new fuel to site until the plant is ready for refueling. Material in the reactor is too hard to steal. Militia would only be on site during refueling.

    Step 3 is to order an analysis of the efficiency of the NRC. Get rid of the 90% of the people, paperwork, and processes that don’t accomplish anything.

  42. I think many posters here forget that the future energy needs aren’t in US/EU/China.
    It’s in Africa and sub-continent. Africa will soon need 3x the combined electrical power of the US. Today the entire continent uses less than 10% of the US total output. Plus the folks there will need all that other stuff that oil and gas makes, like, well, almost everything. Today about 500 million Africans don’t have any electricity. In less than 20 years they will.
    Africa has about 50 cars per 1,000 people, rest of world about 180/1,000. Expectations are, with a 8.5% CAGR in vehicles, Africa will have more cars than the US by 2050. BEVs? I highly doubt it. What the US and EU does with respect to CO2 is irrelevant when it comes to where the future economic growth is planning to take place.

    Running Africa on nuclear? not in my lifetime, or my grandkids. Maybe south africa, but no where else. It’s all coal right now, c/o China’s BRI export strategy of selling off cheap and dirty power plants.

    Then there is India…..

  43. PART 2: 

    85% reduction in petroleum consumption. And 92% reduction in coal if the steel industry moves to hydrogen reduction instead of coke. Obviously power is wind, sun, nuclear, hydro.  

    NOPE doesn’t fix the world … if the US+EU alone are staking out the new energy world.  

    The others not compelled by hard economic dis-incentives, such as tariffs, surcharges, import duties, embargoes, outright wars…, will merrily go about using petroleum, coal, natural gas just as they have planned all along. And they together already represent what, 60+% of world demand, AND GROWING?

    NOPE … won’t work. 

    As others have touted, the real trick is threefold.  

    2. NUCLEAR

    To invest billions in developing REALLY high density, low toxicity, benign super-batteries that deliver in excess of 1 kWh/$100 cost, 1 kWh/kg density, and at least ⊕5 “c” (i.e. 5 kW/kWh) charge-discharge rating is highest priority. Cannot reasonably ‘convert’ existing cars, trucks, SUVs, … semis, trains, delivery trucks, ambulances, all in one quick swoop.  Can’t. But with good cheap, longlived batteries, well … the future becomes a whole-lot brighter.  

    Nuclear however needs to be FULLY modularized.

    BUT JUST AS IMPORTANT is to find a way to bring the cost of power down … to about 10¢/kWh or less … retail … delivered to one’s home, office, filling station and steakhouse, so that the electric-thermal and electric-transportation industries flourish.  

    Just saying,
    GoatGuy ✓

  44. So… to our Honorable Mr. Wang as well as those touting very-high ratio nuclear plus easily secured, flexible output renewable scheme.

    FIRST, like it or not (LION), a significant fraction of the petrochemical industry manufactures a lot of raw materials for the plastics, coatings, additives, lubricants, agro-chemicals and general chemicals industries, AND THAT the almost-total majority of their organic feedstock comes straight from PETROLEUM refining and COAL-to-coke reformation.

    SECOND LION, the petrochemical side-stream from motor, aircraft and marine fuel making is rather larger than the chemical industries soak up. So most excess is back-blended “if not too nasty” with bottom-shelf motor fuel, and when noxious into bunker fuels and heating feedstock to the refineries themselves.

    THIRD LION, airlines industries will be “wed” to petroleum fuels until a revolution in batteries comes about that exceeds 2 kWh per kg of fully-encased, all-fittings-included battery packs. At about 2.5 kWh/kg, full-sized, medium-range jets can be made, using all electric propulsion. Not until, as the ranges are rather longer than the glib 750 nautical miles presently bandied about. 

    IT MUST THEN BE SAID… if I wave about my unicorn horn wand, to get rid of all-but-the-irreplaceable petrochemical feedstock (i.e. few motor fuels, except for high-intensity, long haul, and aircraft), then the US (in particular) crude use could drop by 85% or greater. 

    That’s big. 

    Just saying,
    GoatGuy … more .

  45. I know eVinci isn’t very far along… I’m afraid I don’t have anything nice to say about its prospects. I agree Westinghouse is a reputable company and that the Trump Administration appears to be friendly to business in general. Westinghouse employs some of the most talented individuals in the field; W has great depth and width. If a market for any reactor develops in North America, W will get a big piece. By comparison, the staffing at GE nuclear is down to a skeleton crew. Westinghouse is like a National Lab that makes money between bankruptcies; GE has avoided bankruptcy by cutting back deeply.

    These companies do best when they have large contracts with the federal government.

  46. What we need to do is find the path of least resistance. Right now there is a lot of resistance to building nuclear power plants in the US. But there isn’t a lot of resistance to building renewable. So the best thing to do is build the renewable.

    As for planting trees, I think we can sell that idea.

    Seeding the sea with iron. I would do some experimentation before I cling to that as a life saver.

    And the correct assumption should be that the rest of the world will also be trying to reduce their CO2 emissions, not just us.

  47. Hi ScaryJello, you seem to have the 411 on nuclear. I would like to know your thoughts on what the chances are for a reactor like the eVinci to pass the regulatory process and get built in the US? There are a lot of complaints about NIMBY and people protesting, but at the end of the day it is the NRC that decides whether they can be built and operated here. Westinghouse is a reputable company and the design is walk away safe and proliferation resistant, low cost, fast setup (around one month), everything we could want. It would be hard to find a more friendly government administration for new nuclear designs. No new reactors approved over 30+ years does seem excessive. Any thoughts?

  48. “The world is increasing by 2% per year. “

    What does that mean? LOL.

    ” The existing nuclear power should get extended uprates using Lightbridge metal fuel. Uprates could affordably add about 4 to 6% to nuclear production.”

    I’ll tell my boss to get right on that.

    “Thorcon is developing mass producable nuclear molten salt reactors which could cost $1 billion per GW. 

    Because they say so?

    “The eVince could be mass produced like airplanes from factories.”

    Actually, it could be mass produced today with a xerox copier (or Chinese knock-off copier).

  49. The current needed baseload for renewable energy to create a stable grid is 40% with more distribution networks, HTDV lines and flexible loading hours at an only small added cost. This figure keeps coming down. Current nuclear technology is not ready for wide use. We are at least two decades away from reaching renewable energy capacity levels that will make it relevant to ask which clean baseload energy generation shall we use. Hydro, bio mass and upcoming shale geothermal, river-sea salinity gradient and sea temperature gradient energy generation can take us way beyond these levels. 10% benign gas turbines and safe molten salt increased nuclear also. So why worry? Just for the mind game I would say that we can create a 2 weeks extremely cheap energy storage with sand storage solar mirror generation and hydraulic storage wind energy, It would not add to the cost much either, just a mind game.

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