Sunday, February 16, 2014

Jeremy Grantham: Wind, Solar to Replace Fossil Fuels Within Decades

Solar panels on a barn. (Credit: manfredxy/Shutterstock) Click to enlarge.
The founder of $100 billion funds manager GMO Capital is known as a contrarian.  But he suggests that the pace of change in the fuel supply will surprise everyone, and have huge implications for fossil fuel investments.

“I have become increasingly impressed with the potential for a revolution in energy, which will make it extremely unlikely that a lack of energy will be the issue that brings us to our knees,” Grantham writes in his latest quarterly newsletter.

“Even in the expected event that there are no important breakthroughs in the cost of nuclear power, the potential for alternative energy sources, mainly solar and wind power, to completely replace coal and gas for utility generation globally is, I think, certain.

“The question is only whether it takes 30 years or 70 years.  That we will replace oil for land transportation with electricity or fuel cells derived indirectly from electricity is also certain, and there, perhaps, the timing question is whether this will take 20 or 40 years.”

Grantham’s predictions go against the conventional wisdom of the fossil fuel industry, but they the thoughts of many people, including Stanford researcher Tony Seba, who said last year this could occur within a few decades.

Jeremy Grantham: Wind, Solar to Replace Fossil Fuels Within Decades

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