I wrote an article on this a while ago on January but never got around to posting it.
Yesterday while at a get together of parents and children from our daughters old kindergarten a discussion was had and it filled out a few arguments and gave me perhaps a better perspective of people trying to be green but outside of the group I often mix with.
Basically most of the others are technology driven green groups. The discussion was on the sustainability methods of capturing the excess power from the current crop of renewable energy. Be that PV solar like I have in batteries storage, hot salt methodology as described in Australia to the use of compressed air storage for wind.
As methods of recycling batteries has become easier I believe that a stop gap in the short to medium term will be off grid batteries powered by solar. The truth is that this will be fought tooth and nail by the big providers who’s connection costs at present make up between 1/3 and ½ of the costs while the amount of power they sell plummets.
The discussion did centre as it will always around the economics of the way we use power.
For me and I will publish the article tomorrow on this. I use the power during the day my newer cost effective system with a return to grid of 6.5 cents vs 37 cents to buy means I need to use my power during the day.
To one of the other people who had an older system that cost 4 times mine for the same output but was on a feed in of 70 cents and a buy of 37 cents it was doing everything at night which really means using some of the dirtiest power in the world in the form of brown coal.
A third person who was renting looked at reducing their power to a minimum through stoping zombie usage by turning of at the power point. And switching to a more green provider PowerShop and offsetting it through the use of the of an offset program from the not for profit group they work for.
The owner of the home had another option having just installed roller blinds to keep the heat out reducing the need for energy.
Discussions where had about the value of reducing gas in place of solar hot water or a heat pump on a PV system. When to replace what to replace with etc.
There are a lot of things we can all do to reduce the fossil fuel load on the world there is no silver bullet and it will be a lot of different things that eventually lead to a reduction of the load of power.
And this is the key, the argument that the current renewables cannot sustain our current needs is while not entirely true close enough to allow for the fossil and nuclear industry to use it.
But a low fossil fuel economy now that would be of use to the world and even the current crop of renewables will start to bear that load.