By 2030 inexpensive renewable sources will produce enough energy for the entire world’s needs. Researcher Ray Kurzweil has shown that solar electricity generation has been doubling every two years for the past 30 years at the same time as the cost of manufacturing solar panels has been dropping. He points out that solar energy is only six doublings, that is, less than 14 years away, from meeting 100 percent of the world’s energy needs.
The price of solar panels has fallen over 75% in the past five years and is falling further still. By 2020, in most of the world solar energy will be cheaper than energy generated from fossil fuels on an unsubsidised basis. By 2030 it will only cost a tiny fraction of what fossil fuel-based energy costs.
Yet while solar production is rapidly advancing it also faces competition. Not from the oil industry, but instead from a wide range of other sources of clean energy. Research and production of wind, thermal, tidal, biomass, and waste-breakdown energy are advancing all around the world.
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