Guest post: We will still need

Originally a comment by Rev David Brindley on We cannot even manage those minor changes.

Even IF we can slow, or reverse the rising temperatures, we are still doomed.

The world may come to run on 100% renewable electricity and 100% hydrogen, but there are still limits.

We will still need oil, not for ICEs, but for plastics, pharmaceuticals, fertilisers, etc.

We will still need plastics, not for excessive packaging, but for all its other myriad uses in medicine, science, engineering, etc.

We will run out of silica sands for making solar panels. Fraser Island has enormous deposits of almost 100% pure silica, but mining has been banned since the 70’s. But will that ban hold as silica supply exceeds demand?

We will still need to mine iron ore, copper, and all the other metals needed to build solar panels, and wind turbines, connect them to the grid and distribute the electricity. South Australia has a huge uptake of rooftop solar on homes and commercial properties, but not everywhere in the world is blessed with that amount of sunlight, even in winter.

And then we still have the pollution problem, the industrial waste to dispose of. Solar panels don’t last forever, and there is currently no way to recycle them. A similar problem exists with the blades of wind turbines.

And, that is just the beginning of future problems.

None of that is to argue we should give up the fight, because even if we achieve nothing but cleaner air and water that will be a massive win.

This has been your daily dose of doom and gloom.

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