Bob Dylan was right: “The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind.”
Wind energy costs are expected to fall by up to 30 percent in the next 15 years. That’s according to a freshly published paper in Nature Energy.
A survey of 163 wind-power experts, the review offers a bullish outlook for renewable energy — a necessity is humanity is to create a cleaner, healthier society.
As the survey details: “Costs could be even lower: experts predict a 10% chance that reductions will be more than 40 percent by 2030 and more than 50 percent by 2050.”
The key components in making this happen will be public support and more advanced tech. Polls conducted by the Wind Energy Foundation show public support somewhere in the 60-70 percent range in various Western nations.
Technological advances may have to tackle the Not in My Backyard Syndrome by making turbines quieter and more aesthetically pleasing. As ArsTechnica editor Megan Geuss points out, bigger must be better if turbines are to ramp up efficient production:
Berkeley Lab also suggests that there could be additional benefits to turbines growing larger, in that bigger turbines could also contribute to steadier power output if they’re capable of rotating at lower wind speeds. “Work by and for the U.S. Department of Energy, meanwhile, shows how larger turbines and turbine design advancements might unlock new areas for wind development, both on land and offshore, that would otherwise be deemed unattractive.”
Cleaner energy can only help the advancement of humanity both in quality and quantity of life. Fossil-fueled mega-cities are literally and slowly choking their citizens to death and wreaking havoc with our climate (Trump’s staggeringly illogical ignorance be damned).
From a transhumanist standpoint, the development of Smart Cities is yet another piece of the puzzle to advance and progress our species (and our fellow organisms) to the “next level” of civilization. The answer indeed, Bob Dylan, is blowin’ in the wind.