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Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

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Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby BrianC » Tue 24 Oct 2023, 16:25:04

Global Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak Soon, IEA says (npr.org) 108
Posted by msmash on Tuesday October 24, 2023 @09:40AM from the encouraging-feedback dept.
Demand for climate-warming fuels like coal, oil and natural gas will likely peak before 2030, evidence of the accelerating global shift to energy that doesn't emit greenhouse gasses, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA)'s World Energy Outlook. From a report:
"The transition to clean energy is happening worldwide and it's unstoppable. It's not a question of 'if', it's just a matter of 'how soon' -- and the sooner the better for all of us," said Fatih Birol, IEA executive director, in a statement. The agency represents countries that make up more than 80% of global energy consumption. The annual IEA report estimates that in 2030 there will be 10 times as many electric vehicles on the road worldwide and 50% of the cars sold in the United States will be electric. The agency says solar panels installed across the globe will generate more electricity at the end of the decade than the U.S. power system produces now. And the report projects that renewable energy will supply 50% of the world's electricity needs, up from about 30% now.

But the report warns the pace of the transition will have to quicken considerably in order to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, or 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit, and avoid some of the worst case scenarios in a changing climate. The IEA's outlook lays out a strategy for meeting that goal that includes tripling renewable energy, doubling energy efficiency measures and slashing methane emissions from fossil fuel operations by 75% by 2030. Methane has more than 25 times the climate-warming potential of carbon dioxide, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Climate and anti-fossil fuel groups say the IEA's methane strategy should be even more aggressive.

https://www.npr.org/2023/10/24/12079767 ... n-iea-says
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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby theluckycountry » Thu 09 Nov 2023, 06:37:40

BrianC wrote:Global Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak Soon, IEA says

Well since they include things like the German habit of burning American woodchip pellets to generate electricity I would have to say the IEA and its opinions on clean energy are irrelevant.
But the report warns the pace of the transition will have to quicken considerably

Yes, they have been saying that for years now. It's become one of those tired mantras that no one believes other than science fiction addicts.

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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby Pops » Thu 09 Nov 2023, 10:37:21

In a related note the first small modular nuke in the US has been canceled— because renewables.

Ironic really since Hubbert's "peak" paper "“Nuclear Energy and the Fossil Fuels" was about the need to switch to nukes because oil, coal etc would inevitably poop out.

Diffuse, regional solar/wind power production needs transmission and storage but that will come as long as we make the investment in time. The problem is, and always has been, oil will be needed to make the transition, we're a long way from farming with tiny robots or whatever solution we come up with.
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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby yellowcanoe » Thu 09 Nov 2023, 11:59:03

Pops wrote:In a related note the first small modular nuke in the US has been canceled— because renewables.

Ironic really since Hubbert's "peak" paper "“Nuclear Energy and the Fossil Fuels" was about the need to switch to nukes because oil, coal etc would inevitably poop out.


I've believed for quite some time that while solar and wind power themselves are quite cost effective, the need to provide some form of backup generation to deal with both daily and seasonal variations in renewable energy production actually makes renewables quite expensive. After my wife and I purchased an off-grid cabin earlier this year I am seeing that first hand.

I installed a basic solar system to replace the propane fridge and propane lighting. We still use propane for the stove. In the summer months it was great -- on most days there was enough generation to run the two small fridges we have, lighting and some heavier uses such as a vacuum cleaner and plug in tools and still have the battery storage up to 100% by the time the sun went down. It's an entirely different story now that we are into November. With the shorter days there simply isn't enough time to get the system back up to 100%, even on a mostly sunny day. Sunny days are also in short supply and generation isn't anywhere close to meeting our energy requirements on a cloudy day. We find ourselves increasingly having to run a propane fired generator to charge up the battery storage. We didn't even have a generator in the summer -- it wasn't until early October that we purchased one.

The Ontario government is planning a small modular nuclear reactor installation. That's a good thing as Ontario was getting 60% of its generated power from nuclear. That figure is down right now due to the project to refurbish the four 900MW reactors at Darlington and nuclear capacity will be further reduced in the next few years as the six units operating at the Pickering station reach their EOL.
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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby theluckycountry » Thu 09 Nov 2023, 15:39:53

yellowcanoe wrote: After my wife and I purchased an off-grid cabin earlier this year I am seeing that first hand.


Yes, that was my wake up call too. Trying to live a normal modern existence on solar panels and batteries alone is a joke unless you spend roughly $10k per person, and then spend it again (adding inflation) every 12 to 15 years. That big Trogen battery bank I bought 7 years ago has doubled in price now. Thankfully it's still in good condition since I moved to a town with grid power and rarely use it. It's there for blackouts, which rarely happen. I still have friends out there and they talk about power like old people talk about their illnesses and surgeries. You don't want to call them after 3 days of overcast I assure you.

No one really has the right to comment on re-buildable energy systems until they have tried to live with them. It's like listening to people who have never driven telling you about performance innovations in cars. Unfortunately the internet is full of people giving authoritative comment, all based on articles they have read or videos they have watched.

And yet, even after all this time they still cannot connect the dots? Germany, the re-buildable darling is shutting down now because of it's foray into solar and wind but only a few years ago everyone was singing its praises because of the cherry picked data, much of it government based. Belief in re-buildable power is like a religion for many. It has all the hallmarks.

The Reason Renewables Can't Power Modern Civilization Is Because They Were Never Meant To
https://www.forbes.com/sites/michaelshe ... b239cfea2b
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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby Pops » Fri 10 Nov 2023, 12:11:05

I've long thought of renewables as personal mitigation for the middle term if a person can bite the bullet and spend the money. I'm pleasantly surprised at how dramatically the price and availability of components has fallen.

Long term I don't believe there is a painless mitigation that preserves a status quo rooted in fossils energy too cheap to meter. I mean I still have a 7,000 lb vehicle to haul the occasional 2x4 so obviously diesel at $5/gallon isn't too expensive. Modern life, such as it is, requires near unlimited cheap, concentrated energy— that was a one-time endowment.


I have type I diabetes and am some kind of prepper so I have over the years built up a stock of many thousands of dollars worth of insulin. Insulin is perishable so must be kept cool and I've experimented with many ways to keep it acceptably so. Over the last few years I've finally put together a backup system consisting of 30kWh of LiFePo storage, 4kW of panels and a 6kW inverter/charger. It is a non-rated system, no UL label, so it would fail inspection in a city. OTOH it cost a relatively small $15k — probably about the same as half my insulin supply.

I outfitted our travel trailer to share some components like batteries and panels so we can boondock / dry camp and also make it a part of the house system. I have a dozen 250w panels stored in the outbuilding.

That the physical components will eventually loose efficiency is not the main problem. Neither that the power provided is not limitless, again, renewables are a poor substitute for relatively free fossil fuels. The problem is that just like nukes, all the cost is up front. I said it here almost 20 years ago, how much time do we have to prepare before preparing is too costly?

The sweet spot of falling price and virtually free credit for most people is probably already past. I've read several stories of canceled battery factories and of course China's implosion will cancel lots of cheap panel and equipment plans.

Well great, I brought out the doom after all.
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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby mousepad » Fri 10 Nov 2023, 12:51:25

Pops wrote:The problem is that just like nukes, all the cost is up front

I'm not sure how much of a problem that really is.
It's like building a house. All the cost are upfront, yet houses are still built (without end in sight, in my area).

And so it will be with renewables. The choice will be either no power, or pony up and pay the price upfront.
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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby Pops » Fri 10 Nov 2023, 17:39:42

The average person can't afford the average home and new home starts are down 20% from last year. Home builders aren't building because money is tight and costs high. Home ownership is high by historical standards because of a decade of free money but half of owners say they couldn't afford to buy their house today. Costs are 50% higher than pre-pandemic and with high rates they can't afford to lose their 3% loan to move across town.

We've gotten used to cheap money and banks pushing it out the door. But that isn't the norm—just look at the trillions added to the deficit over the last couple decades in particular to see where that "free" money came from.

The pandemic jiggered up the economy and set the stage for corporate price rigging, then the fed's gyrations jiggered the interest rate so that no one can buy or afford to sell. A systemic shortfall of oil would likewise jamb the energy market and make it harder for everyone to get credit even if there were capacity to produce enough PV to go around.

Already clamshell plastic boxes of lettuce are so heavy they embody more energy that their contents. Fracking has been a boon to the petrochemical industry that exports the light to get the heavy. The top line number looks rosy and much has been made of that top number. But lots of that LTO gets consumed as feedstock or exported to make plastic tchotchkes while we still import heavy oil to make fuel.

Oh, and throw in that lots of utilities are petitioning, and succeeding, in lowering or eliminating the feed-in tariffs that underwrite some large proportion of grid-tie installs.

I quit predicting the future but just looking around at the situation I find I've lost some of the optimism I had about the surprise in falling PV costs enabling transition, whether global warming induced or not. Still, for motivated individuals who can afford to, this is a good time.
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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby mousepad » Fri 10 Nov 2023, 18:12:40

Pops wrote:The average person can't afford the average home


Well, the average home will adjust and become what's affordable by the average person.
There's a historic log cabin in my area from 1780. It's 700 sqft, 2 rooms and housed an "average" family of 2 adults and 8 kids.

Maybe the new average is a single wide, shared by 2 families.

And such it will be with renewables. As long as it provides benefits at the cost, it will be built.
However one thing seems clear to me, standard of living will sink significantly. I don't believe that renewables are capable of powering the high flying luxury we've gotten used to. But what do I know, time will tell....
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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby mousepad » Fri 10 Nov 2023, 18:58:39

Pops wrote: I find I've lost some of the optimism I had about the surprise in falling PV costs enabling transition,


The beauty of all this is we don't have to worry about it. We don't have to transition. Transitioning will be done by Papa Nature on our behalf. No effort is needed from us. Transitioning will be completely free. So rejoice!!
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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby theluckycountry » Fri 10 Nov 2023, 19:25:27

Pops wrote:The average person can't afford the average home and new home starts are down 20% from last year. Home builders aren't building because money is tight and costs high.


I worked for 20 years in the construction industry beginning back in the 70's, commercial as well as 'cottage'. One observation I made 20 years ago is that modern houses are being made from ever cheaper products, from the roofing to the thickness of the slab and everything in between. In the subsequent 20 years it's only got worse.

With my knowledge of the industry I bought an old 70's era house, no one want's those old dogs! It's double clay brick, with full length solid steel I-beams supporting the upstairs floor, which is tongue and grove hardwood on hardwood floor joists. Copper plumbing, colorbond steel roof. Nothing is made like that now, hasn't been since the "Peak of quality" in the 70's. The floors are all particle board now, the frames pine, the plumbing plastic.

A nasty hail storm went through the city north of me a few years back, one new suburb of springfield was especially hard hit. The hail destroyed all the solar panels of course but they were the lucky homes! Ones without solar saw the hail punch through the cheap concrete roof tiles, through the ceiling insulation and plaster-board and then demolished a lot of the furniture below. Most people buy that cheap IKEA crap so it just collapsed in many cases. The owners were gob-smacked as they looked at the wreckage but if they knew anything at all about building they shouldn't have been surprised.

But that's the problem isn't it. The general public is totally clueless! They go into debt for over a million dollars (after interest on the term of the loan is added) to buy a home and don't even consider the construction of it. All they care about is does it have a nice tile roof (not ghastly colorbond tin), nice facade and pretty door knobs, a flash new kitchen. In 30 years these homes will be next to worthless I predict.

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The wiring isn't even secured to the roof trusses, just laid over them. Mind boggling!

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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby Pops » Sat 11 Nov 2023, 10:07:15

I also worked construction in various roles from the 70's to current. I'm fairly confident in saying todays houses are far superior thanks to code requirements and advancements in tech. The 70'-90s saw lots of crap thrown against the wall that didn't stick: CPVC, poly tubing, paper siding and roofing, SIPs, aluminum wiring, particleboard, tighter construction but no ventilation, on and on really. Oh, and lots of poor quality coatings and finishes after the lead and asbestos bans upturned those products.

Back to the topic tho, I don't think we can make much dent in oil demand without big government backing of renewable build-out. Before the GI Bill and government subsidized mortgages in 1944, most banks wouldn't lend to buy a house like today. The loans were short and the downpayment tall - if you could get one. Along came Levittown and cookie-cutter subdivisions and sprawl was born but ownership grew to 65% (and holding because the market is now locked up tight)

Consequently the average living space per person was 500 square feet in 1960 is more like 1,000 today! Credit— or blame, goes to easier borrowing.

At this point there is a lack of standardization in the manufacture of consumer level PV equipment. There are government subsidies and codes but still nothing like the GI bill that produced the FHA/VA loans today. Grid-tie systems go for ridiculous sums if you can believe the DIY forums I sometimes peruse. People report outrageous estimates for installs. Energy tax credits help as do and grid-tie credit but as I said, utilities hate those and will increasingly fight them.

There needs to be a bigger push, unfortunately that won't happen due to the current politics, not to mention that everyone is overextended already.
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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby Dewol49172 » Thu 14 Dec 2023, 02:40:13

The International Energy Agency's World Energy Outlook suggests that global demand for fossil fuels could peak before 2030 due to the accelerating shift towards clean energy. The report emphasizes the unstoppable worldwide transition and projects significant increases in electric vehicles, solar energy, and renewable energy supplying 50% of global electricity by 2030. However, it highlights the need for an even faster transition to limit global warming, proposing strategies like tripling renewable energy, doubling energy efficiency, and reducing methane emissions by 75% by 2030. Climate groups advocate for even more aggressive measures, given the urgency of addressing climate change.

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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby Pops » Thu 14 Dec 2023, 19:34:09

wow, don't see much spam anymore huh?
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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby ralfy » Thu 14 Dec 2023, 20:51:09

From what I remember, around 70 pct of heavy equipment in mining use diesel, around half of energy in manufacturing involves fossil fuels, and the bulk of shipping involves similar, including bunker oil and marine diesel. And then there are petrochemicals involved in tens of thousands of applications.

Meanwhile, the quality and quantity of "clean" energy remain low due to lack of material resources, as demand for the latter increases per capita because more people worldwide need and want more "stuff".
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Re: Shift To Clean Energy Means Fossil Fuel Demand Will Peak

Unread postby theluckycountry » Fri 15 Dec 2023, 07:25:20

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