Today we have a new study that suggests the idea that it is perfectly possible that the United States could run 100% renewable energy in just 35 years. This plan describes what each state must do to achieve this ambitious goal. What is the main obstacle to achieving this? Political will.
Marcos Z. Jacobson, from Stanford University, and his research team describe the changes in infrastructure and energy consumption that every state must undergo to make this transition to clean energy. Jacobson notes in a statement that it is “technologically and economically” possible to achieve this “large-scale transformation”. The researchers even created a interactive map showing your plans.
The study, published in the journal Energy and Environmental Sciences, first analyzes the current demand for energy in each state and then calculates how it will change over the next 35 years. They divided energy consumption into four sectors: residential, commercial, industrial and transportation. For each sector, the researchers analyzed the energy consumption and studied the source of this energy, to see if it was coal, oil, gas, nuclear or renewable energies.
The researchers then calculate the fuel demand if everything were replaced with electricity. While everything works, including cars and home heaters, with electricity seems like a daunting task, researchers suggest there would be significant energy savings in using this power grid.
“When we did the math for the 50 states, we saw a 39% reduction in energy demand by 2050”Jacobson said. “About 6 percentage points are gained through improved infrastructure efficiency, but most of it is the result of the replacement of current electricity sources and combustion energy uses.. “
Jacobson and his team have carefully considered how each state can be powered by this power grid. For some states, solar power is the most viable, while wind or geothermal power makes the most sense for others. In general, researchers have examined how wind, solar, geothermal, hydroelectric, and even small amounts of wave energy could meet energy demand.
With this information, the researchers developed a plan for each state that can switch to 80% renewable energy by 2030 and reach 100% by 2050. The transition will be much more achievable for some states than for others.
The researchers admit that the initial cost of this transformation would be quite high, but they suggest that Over time, the world price would roughly equal the cost of the current fossil fuel infrastructure.