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Wind, solar power soaring in spite of bargain prices for fossil fuels – The Washington Post

2016-01-14

“Renewables have turned a corner in a fundamental way,” said Dan Reicher, a former Energy Department assistant secretary who is now executive director of Stanford University’s Steyer-Taylor Center for Energy Policy and Finance.

While solar and wind power have been expanding in the United States for years because of steadily falling costs, decisions by Congress and the White House in 2015 have set the stage for continued growth, Reicher and other energy experts say.

These decisions include last month’s extension of the production tax credit, which encourages investments in solar and wind through 2019, as well as the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan, a regulation adopted in August that requires states to reduce emissions from power plants. Clean-energy companies also received an important boost from last month’s climate accord in Paris, where more than 190 countries approved a plan to reduce pollution from fossil-fuel burning worldwide.

“The policy base for renewables has strengthened, both on the incentives side and through mandates,” Reicher said. “At the same time, the financing of renewable-energy projects has become a mainstream business for Wall Street. The early-stage investments from Silicon Valley for clean energy were small potatoes compared to the massive investments Wall Street is making. It truly is a global business.”

via Wind, solar power soaring in spite of bargain prices for fossil fuels – The Washington Post.

January 1 2016

This article promises new hope for amelioration of the global warming phenomenon but we should remember that the data say that the problem is already well-advanced and that the severe effects of global warming have yet to really show themselves.  The rise in carbon dioxide concentration that we have seen is consistent with a higher global mean temperature, and the behavior of carbon dioxide in air tells us that it will not be washed out of the atmosphere for a hundred years or more.

I do see hope for the delivery of huge amounts of renewable power to run air conditioners and heaters in the places on the planet where people will be living.  I don’t know if there will be a surplus economy with strong growth or a scarcity economy with stagnation but I’m hoping for the surplus.

We can expect temperatures to continue to rise for some time, and there will be significant rises in sea level.  In a hundred years, if we stop producing an excess of carbon dioxide as the above article suggests, atmospheric levels will drop significantly and temperatures will stabilize.

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