A 100% renewable energy payoff


A new Stanford University study, published in Energy and Environmental Science, shows how 145 countries could attain 100% renewable energy economies within six years. That transition would also create millions more jobs than “business-as-usual” scenarios, the study finds. An excerpt:

“The world is undergoing a transition to clean, renewable energy to reduce air pollution, global warming, and energy insecurity. To minimize damage, all energy should ideally be transitioned by 2035. Whether this occurs will depend substantially on social and political factors. One concern is that a transition to intermittent wind and solar will cause blackouts. To analyze this issue, we examine the ability of 145 countries grouped into 24 regions to avoid blackouts under realistic weather conditions that affect both energy demand and supply, when energy for all purposes originates from 100% clean, renewable (zero air pollution and zero carbon) Wind-Water-Solar (WWS) and storage. Three-year (2050–52) grid stability analyses for all regions indicate that transitioning to WWS can keep the grid stable at low-cost, everywhere. Batteries are the main electricity storage option in most regions. No batteries with more than four hours of storage are needed. Instead, long-duration storage is obtained by concatenating batteries with 4 hour storage. The new land footprint and spacing areas required for WWS systems are small relative to the land covered by the fossil fuel industry. The transition may create millions more long-term, full-time jobs than lost and will eliminate carbon and air pollution from energy.”

Read the report

(Headline photo: lamoix/Creative Commons)

Support Beyond Nuclear

Help to ensure a safer, greener and more just world for all