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100 Percent Renewable Energy Achievable By 2030: Study

Wind

The Huffington Post   First Posted: 01/25/11 08:25 AM ET Updated: 05/25/11 07:25 PM ET

Could the world reach a 100 percent renewable energy goal in less than 20 years? New research says we can.

A report published in the journal Energy Policy claims that by 2030, the world can achieve 100 percent renewable energy if the proper measures are taken.

What exactly are these measures? According to PhysOrg, over 80 percent of our world's energy supply currently comes from fossil fuels. We would need to build approximately four million wind turbines, nearly 2 billion solar photovoltaic systems, and about 90,000 solar power plants. The 5 MW wind turbines needed are up to three times the capacity of most of our current wind turbines. Doable? Perhaps. Formidable? Most certainly.

But Mark Delucchi and Mark Jacobson believe that if the will exists, there is a way. Germany and China have both already built 5 MW offshore turbines. A few dozen utility-scale solar plants already exist. Plus, the researchers believe that all of the major necessary resources are available - the only "material bottleneck" lies in obtaining rare earth materials, supplies which could be increased with more mining or recycling.

Human beings are probably the biggest blockade in achieving a renewable energy goal. As Discovery News explains, "With so many new Republicans on Capitol Hill who don't believe in the science of climate change (which will continue until the year 3000), not to mention many members of the public, it may be a challenge to achieve such a task and get off fossil fuels."

What do you think? Can the world achieve 100 percent renewable energy by 2030?

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