RE­NEW­ABLES TAKE FLIGHT

Alberta Oil - - REPORT ON NATURAL GAS -

THERE ARE NU­MER­OUS SMALL

fac­tors that could slightly in­crease or de­crease these pro­jec­tions. For ex­am­ple, nat­u­ral gas in trans­porta­tion could fi­nally see a ma­jor surge. But the real wild­card in nat­u­ral gas de­mand fore­casts is re­new­able en­ergy sources. “To meet that 450 [ppm] tar­get set by the In­ter­gov­ern­men­tal Panel on Cli­mate Change, you re­ally need a lot of con­ver­sion to re­new­ables, so that is the one threat to gas,” says Jackie Forrest of ARC Fi­nan­cial. “In a sce­nario where the world cre­ates pol­icy to limit emis­sions within that 450 ppm range, gas mar­ket share is smaller than would be the case other­wise.”

The costs for re­new­able sources like wind and so­lar are fall­ing fast, and are con­stantly see­ing im­prove­ments in en­ergy re­turn on in­vest­ment (EROI), but build­ing up ca­pac­ity none­the­less re­quires heavy spend­ing. Global in­vest­ment in re­new­ables is ex­pected to reach $400 bil­lion by 2030, up from $270 bil­lion to­day. That is sure to pay ma­jor div­i­dends in fu­ture. The IEA pre­dicts that un­der cur­rent pol­icy, global con­sump­tion of re­new­ables will in­crease three­fold by 2040; un­der more strin­gent gov­ern­ment reg­u­la­tions, it pre­dicts re­new­ables would grow by a fac­tor of eight. In­vest­ment in clean en­ergy will con­tinue as coun­tries feel in­creas­ing pres­sure to keep global tem­per­a­tures un­der con­trol. With bil­lions fund­ing re­search and in­no­va­tion ef­forts, a ground-shift­ing im­prove­ment in re­new­able en­ergy is plau­si­ble.

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