Households will have no issue whatsoever to decarbonize. Their rooftops will catch all the energy they need from Fusion reactor number 1, and community windmills will fill in the gaps when the sun is down. Our Tesla batteries store energy for half a neighborhood and in case we want to go all the way in reliability we will place flow batteries in every street.
If energy is in tight supply our smart neighborhood net will follow the programmed heuristic to lower power demand by switching of washing machines, boilers and lowering power usage of heat pumps. No doubt in my mind that “we the people” can be fossil free within 15 years. The most expensive part of the energy infrastructure (the low voltage distribution network in towns) will loose their goal and be decommissioned. We only need to connect with our neighbors in a mesh network to distribute our local power.
Not so for the industry. 365×24 aluminum smelters, paper mills, nuclear fuel processing plants, steel factories, manufacturing industry, they are desperately dependent on stable and MASSIVE amounts of cheap and stable energy. It is this group that screams from the rooftops that “Renewable is not feasible”. It is this group that has the lobby power to keep coal taxes low. It is this group that has Energy Ministers in their pocket to give of fracking permits. I’ve been angry at them, for refusing to modernize, for refusing to rethink, for only thinking about short term solutions.
But if you truly want the whole world to decarbonize there is no other solution than to think for these mastodons. So last week I came across a solution that is so beautiful in its simplicity that it really a shame that I didn’t come across it earlier**. The reason for this is because when you research the technology Google trashes you with documents laced with these words:
I’ve made it a picture so Google can’t index them.
Point is, there this an element number 90 (look it up) that in 100% pure form, when mixed with a minute amount of waste U233 that acts like a catalyst, magically starts to give of HUGE amounts of energy that can be harvested in a completely safe way, without the risks associated with “Fossil” Nuclear Power plants.
I always used to be very very anti-Nuclear, for the right reasons, but researching Liquid-Fluoride Thorium Reactor (LFTR, or “lifter”) I must conclude that this technology should really be framed as “iNergy” in an Apple style glamorous setting if it actually made true it’s promises.
This is because the physics look rock solid based on 100% pure Thorium, accidents like Fukushima can’t happen (no pressure, no massive amounts of radioactive pollutants). And in case of complete systems failure it shuts itself down, even if all pumps were Tsunamied away. It needs Nuclear Waste to get started and burns the shit away if the starting material is 100% pure! The waste that comes out of a Thorium plant (if any) is safer than the ore it originated from within 300 years. Any how, Google Thorium LFTR, ignore the ’50’s and ’60’s frame and look at whats there**
A rock solid energy source, extremely expensive to develop and based on 100% clean fuel sources, but if we let the MegaCorps bite that bullet (it’s called investing), thats really OK, because they will get what they so desperately need : unmeasurable amounts of free energy! Check it out!
** since Thorium is ratio active (it falls apart) 100% pure is not possible and the contaminants make the whole idea utterly unfeasible. That is the reason that after 50 years of research the “fast breeder” reactor was buried on economic grounds. Only India pursuits the idea. And even if it would work it would take centuries to “breed” all the Uranium needed to start these reactors. Looks like industry has to rethink the sun anyways.