There are so many hopeful alternative power technologies that 100% renewable is possible in the very near future.
This is great, but there is more that alternative power can do than just clear the air, and what I think most about is #degriding.
#Degriding is a term I use to encourage the phasing out of long and medium distance power transmission. #Degriding is less about power use than it is about economic democratization of power generation!
Fully sustainable economies are those that control the impacts of production and consumption in as local a fashion possible. The rational is that the greater control we have over the impact we cause; the more care we take to do no damage. So what 3D printing could do for localization of manufacturing , #degriding can do for power. More concretely: it’s neighbors selling to neighbors and communities to communities.
Big Coal and Gas Utilities and Big Oil? They’ve served their purpose and our communities just don’t need the influence of self-interested companies who have demonstrably not been on the side of sustainability even when it comes to clean energy.
Don’t think so? Last week Triple Pundit reported on corporate plans to transmit wind power in and around the Midwest. Plans for local generation in Nebraska are being derailed by quarreling corporate and government interests.
Beyond thwarting corporate interests and giving power to the people, long distance transmission is inefficient compared to selling to a neighbor. It affects millions of acres of wildlife and is visually unattractive. Can you imagine a future without wires?! Older neighborhoods and developing county cities will certainly welcome the end of visual grid pollution.
Power independence is possible and it affords the opportunity to take greater community control of our economies at the same time.