When I study the Brookings graphic showing the fossil increases in Germany and Japan it makes me really sad. But the majority of citizens are happy that the hated nuclear is dead or dying.
I think Germany is driving their economy off a cliff. As RE penetration increases their generation costs will go convex. Germany is already around 27% RE, with “greens” talking about going to 100% as fast as possible. But the man on the street thinks this is all grand. It is political suicide for a politician to propose reversing the anti-nuclear Energiewende.
To my surprise the Brookings scholars speaking at the event do not seem concerned. E.g., they quote a new NREL study proposing a pathway to 80% RE. Among the “lessons learned”:
Implications for the United States:
Policymakers must work to build a baseline consensus on national energy objectives and then develop and implement consistent, durable and clear policy mechanisms to achieve those objectives
The U.S. needs to elevate environmental goals as part of its overall energy objectives—in particular addressing climate change through reduction of greenhouse gases—and link these environmental goals to economic and national security issues
Renewable energy needs to be considered a national asset, with the capacity to balance multiple objectives
Brookings is a big place. Evidently it's possible for the RE group to be unaware of other Brookings research just published in May this year “The Net Benefits of Low and No-Carbon Electricity Technologies” Charles Frank, summarized in the blog Why the Best Path to a Low-Carbon Future is Not Wind or Solar Power.
This is a placeholder for a longer post when I have time to write it. Check out the audio or transcript and the brief. What do you think?