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Another Must Read — Renewable Energy Needs Huge Mineral Supply — Trading One Kind of “Energy Crisis” for Another

Thanks to Turbine Watch 312 for the find of this great article.

Tim Radford, Climate News Network  — November 2, 2013

LONDON – Humankind could be about to exchange one kind of energy crisis for another. The switch from the finite store of fossil fuels to renewable sources could involve a huge additional demand for the world’s equally finite store of metals and minerals.

Three French CRNS scientists – Olivier Vidal and Nicholas Arndt of the University of Grenoble and Bruno Goffé of Aix-Marseille University – issue the warning in Nature Geoscience.

They say that to match the power generated by fossil fuels or nuclear power stations, the construction of solar energy farms and wind turbines will gobble up 15 times more concrete, 90 times more aluminum and 50 times more iron, copper and glass. Right now wind and solar energy meet only about 1 percent of global demand; hydroelectricity meets about 7 percent.

The trio argue that if the contribution from wind turbines and solar energy to global energy production is to rise from the current 400 terawatt hours to 12,000 terawatt hours in 2035, and 25,000 terawatt hours in 2050, that will require 3,200 million tons of steel, 310 million tons of aluminum and 40 million tons of copper to construct state-of-the-art generating systems.   Continue reading here…..

iron-ore

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One Comment on “Another Must Read — Renewable Energy Needs Huge Mineral Supply — Trading One Kind of “Energy Crisis” for Another”

  1. cornwallwindwatch November 4, 2013 at 9:21 am #

    Reblogged this on Cornwall Wind Watch.

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