Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Can the world be powered mainly by solar and wind energy?

Date:
August 25, 2010
Source:
American Chemical Society
Summary:
Continuous research and development of alternative energy could soon lead to a new era in human history in which two renewable sources -- solar and wind -- will become Earth's dominant contributor of energy, a Nobel laureate said at a conference.

Continuous research and development of alternative energy could soon lead to a new era in human history in which two renewable sources -- solar and wind -- will become Earth's dominant contributor of energy, a Nobel laureate said in Boston at a special symposium at the American Chemical Society's 240th National Meeting on August 24.

Walter Kohn, Ph.D., who shared the 1998 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, noted that total oil and natural gas production, which today provides about 60 percent of global energy consumption, is expected to peak about 10 to 30 years from now, followed by a rapid decline. He is with the University of California, Santa Barbara.

"These trends have created two unprecedented global challenges," Kohn said. "One is the threatened global shortage of acceptable energy. The other is the unacceptable, imminent danger of global warming and its consequences."

Kohn noted that these challenges require a variety of responses. "The most obvious is continuing scientific and technical progress providing abundant and affordable alternative energies, safe, clean and carbon-free," he said.

Because the challenges are global in nature, the scientific and technical work should enjoy a maximum of international cooperation, which fortunately is beginning to evolve, he said.

The global photovoltaic energy production increased by a factor of about 90 and wind energy by a factor of about 10 over the last decade. He expects vigorous growth of these two effectively inexhaustible energies to continue during the next decade and beyond, thereby leading to a new era, the SOL/WIND era, in human history, in which solar and wind energy have become the earth's dominant energy sources.

Another important issue, incumbent primarily on developed countries, whose population has pretty much leveled off, is reduction in per capita energy consumption, Kohn said.

"A striking example is the U.S. per capita consumption of gasoline, approximately 5 times higher than the global average," he said. "The less developed world, understandably, aims to bring their standard of living to a level similar to that of the highly developed countries; in return they should stabilize their growing populations."

Kohn noted that he is impressed by students on his campus who spent their own collective funds to fully solarize an athletic building. "When it comes to providing leadership by young people in the area of energy conservation and energy efficiency and global warming -- they are fantastic," he said. "It is a major social commitment for our times."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Chemical Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Chemical Society. "Can the world be powered mainly by solar and wind energy?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 August 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100824161424.htm>.
American Chemical Society. (2010, August 25). Can the world be powered mainly by solar and wind energy?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100824161424.htm
American Chemical Society. "Can the world be powered mainly by solar and wind energy?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100824161424.htm (accessed September 20, 2014).

Share This



More Earth & Climate News

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

New Music With Recycled Instruments at Colombia Fest

New Music With Recycled Instruments at Colombia Fest

AFP (Sep. 19, 2014) Jars, bottles, caps and even a pizza box, recovered from the trash, were the elements used by four musical groups at the "RSFEST2014 Sonorities Recycling Festival", in Colombian city of Cali. Duration: 00:49 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Wildfires in CA Burn Forest Asunder

Raw: Wildfires in CA Burn Forest Asunder

AP (Sep. 18, 2014) An out-of-control Northern California wildfire has nearly 2,800 people from their homes as it continues to grow, authorities said Thursday. Authorities said a man has been arrested on suspicion of arson for starting the fire on Saturday. (Sept. 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Elephant Undergoes Surgery in Tbilisi Zoo

Raw: Elephant Undergoes Surgery in Tbilisi Zoo

AP (Sep. 18, 2014) Grand the elephant has successfully undergone surgery to remove a portion of infected tusk at Tbilisi Zoo in Georgia. British veterinary surgeons used an electric drill to extract the infected piece. (Sept. 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Scientists Examine Colossal Squid

Raw: Scientists Examine Colossal Squid

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) Squid experts in New Zealand thawed and examined an unusual catch on Tuesday: a colossal squid. It was captured in Antarctica's remote Ross Sea in December last year and has been frozen for eight months. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins