Renewable Energy Claims Are Unsustainable
Whereas “renewable energy” conjures up visions of wind, solar, and tidal power, “clean” energy sources that will last forever to power the world into a “green,” sustainable future, it won’t happen without an Orwellian restructuring of the world’s social and economic fabric as envisioned by the U.N.’s Commission on Environment and Development more commonly known as the Bruntland Commission.
Chaired in the late 1980s by Gro Harlem Brundtland, a former prime minister of Norway, the commission set about to advance what appeared to be a noble and desirable cause.
Its foundational report titled “Our Common Future” stated, “Humanity has the ability to make development sustainable in order to ensure that it meets the needs of the present without compromising the needs of future generations.” So far, it seems pretty hard to argue with a goal like that.
Unfortunately, while it would be great if wind and solar power could accomplish this, their potential capacities and reliabilities just aren’t there.
As for tidal power, applications for utility scale power generation are both unproven and doubtful. Ditto for geothermal, which is another geographically and capacity-limited source.
In other words, none of these “renewables” offer anything remotely close to a sustainability panacea . . . either now or likely ever. Nuclear power, breeder reactors in particular, come much nearer to making a real difference, yet never seem to get the same credit.
As Roger Andrews observes in his Aug. 26 Energy Matters: Environment and Policy blog, the Brundtland Commission went on to link sustainable development objectives to eradicating world poverty . . . again something that sounds really good. Its report stated: “Poverty is not only an evil in itself, but sustainable development requires meeting basic needs of all and extending to all the opportunity to fulfill their aspirations for a better life. A world in which poverty is endemic will always be prone to ecological and other catastrophes.”