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Surprising Science

Renewable Energy Is a Myth

Politicians and commentators use the word "green" to discuss just about anything. Renewable energy, on the other hand, is clearly defined and does not exist as such.

What’s the Latest Development?


“Green” jobs from the “green” sector of the “green” economy will provide employment for thousands…millions…billions! But what does “green” actually mean? If it means something like renewable energy, we have been fed a lot of wishful thinking. Renewable energy, as such, doesn’t really exist because non-renewable resources are needed to convert sunlight, windpower, etc. into useful energy. And those technologies do have shelf lives which are often shorter than fossil fuel refineries. 

What’s the Big Idea?

“‘Rrenewable energy’ is a meaningless term with no established standards,” says science writer Dawn Stover. The term gets a free pass because nobody wants to confront the ugly truth that even our best efforts fall short of using a truly renewable energy source. “Until we find a way to reduce our energy consumption and to share Earth’s finite resources more equitably among nations and generations, ‘renewable’ energy might as well be called ‘miscellaneous.'”

Photo credit: shutterstock.com


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