Can Alternative Energy Save the Economy and the Climate?
November 13, 2009
A few snippets from an interesting Scientific American article:
BRIGHTON, Colo. – The low-carbon economy has already arrived on the windy prairie north of this fast-growing Denver ‘burb. It’s here that Danish wind-turbine giant Vestas converted 298 acres of hayfield into the West’s largest turbine factory – and turned Brighton into a magnet for “green” energy companies. It’s part of a $1 billion investment by the company in the United States, what Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter touts as a “new energy economy.” Some say these efforts – not the upcoming Copenhagen climate treaty talks – provide the most promising route to energy independence, climate change mitigation and job creation.
China intends to invest $1 million an hour for the next decade – $88 billion in all – in green technologies. The Energy Department expects solar and wind to balloon into a $3.5 trillion market. President Obama last month offered up $3.4 billion in matching grants to hasten development of a “smart grid” in the United States. “What’s truly amazing is the amount of investment flowing into green technology in the absence of any price signal,” said Kristen Sheeran, director of the Economics for Equity and the Environment Network. “It’s clear we’ll continue to see these kinds of investments flowing into green technology, if for no other reason that the Chinese are doing it … and U.S. producers are realizing this is where the future is going to be made.” Read more