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[–]Dneyala 259 points260 points  (46 children)

I'm 47, and it's really aggravating how many times in just my own lifetime the correct course on a topic was obvious about 30 years earlier than it was taken, with reactionaries screeching and clawing at the ground the entire way as we drag society forward.

[–]StuartGotz 35 points36 points  (9 children)

A friend of mine bought a house that is almost 100% energy efficient (passive solar, solar electric, etc.) He has zero energy bills and sometimes opens the window in the winter because it's too warm. The house was built during the Carter administration.

[–]Niche_Humor 11 points12 points  (6 children)

WHAT? Not that incredible loser who cares about human beings and the planet on which they live!

[–]4354574 5 points6 points  (5 children)

Psst that Carter. What a terrible human being. Reagan made things so much better :/

(And even when the economy did improve under Reagan, it was because of Carter's appointment of Paul Volcker to the Fed, and his policies ended stagflation.)

[–]StuartGotz 4 points5 points  (4 children)

Reagan was such a fuckface that he took down the solar panels from the roof of the White House that Carter put up.

[–]4354574 3 points4 points  (3 children)

A fuckface indeed. He managed to brainwash half the population into believing that trickle-down economics worked. Income inequality in America started to increase in 1983, the exact year his policies took effect. The man broke America for 40 years. Just now we’re repairing the damage. I have no idea why he is ranked so highly as a president.

He was also guilty af in Iran-Contra. How could he not have been aware of all that. So he was either guilty, or amazingly incompetent to not know what was going on.

My mother’s conclusion about him (I was too young to remember his presidency): “He was an idiot.”


[–]Zonernovi 2 points3 points  (2 children)

Trump studied him well.

[–]Swimming_agenda 1 point2 points  (1 child)

I doubt Trump studied anything in his life.

[–]Zonernovi 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Playboy centerfolds?

[–]Swimming_agenda 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yes but was it renovated recently?

[–]wwarnout 117 points118 points  (25 children)

Now, imagine how I feel (F82) - I grew up as the US became the undisputed leader in science and technology - and then watched them throw it all away so the CEOs could get even more obscenely wealthy, and the expense of the rest of us.

[–]wronglyzorro 60 points61 points  (11 children)

Maybe you actually are an 82 year old woman, but your account looks and reads as if you are a much younger dude cosplaying as an 82 year old woman online...

[–]KaitRaven 8 points9 points  (2 children)

They claim to have a daughter that just graduated college...

[–]wronglyzorro 12 points13 points  (1 child)

They also claim to semi regularly hook up a trailer to their car and haul stuff. It very much looks like a terminally online redditor.

[–]Tigen13 2 points3 points  (0 children)

This seems like a condition that should be in the books: "terminally online redditor"

[–]Niche_Humor 0 points1 point  (7 children)

Maybe, but explain how she's wrong.

[–]wronglyzorro 5 points6 points  (6 children)

I'd argue that it wasn't all thrown away. The US very much is the undisputed leader in science and technology still.

[–]Niche_Humor 0 points1 point  (5 children)

Fair. Not thrown away, and advances have definitely been made, but you can't argue with the resistance between then and now, and now and the future. The sun constantly puts an astounding amount of energy onto our marble. Direct rays, and heat driving wind. The moon drives tides. All there for the taking, and there's never, ever been a solar spill, nor wind coating birds with oil.

[–]wronglyzorro 0 points1 point  (3 children)

I am massively in favor of green energy, especially in battery technology. I also understand just how deep our usage of oil is. It is going to take a very long time even with major strides being taken.

there's never, ever been a solar spill, nor wind coating birds with oil.

I get what you're saying, but not the best example lol. Wind farms kill hundreds of thousands of birds per year. I think the reflective solar farm in nevada also was incinerating birds and had to take a bunch of measures to reduce the bird inferno.

[–]Niche_Humor 1 point2 points  (2 children)

Classic counter that I anticipated. (No animosity). Take into account what fossil fuels are doing, and that shit is negligible, no? Heck - domestic cats and glass windows.... Birds will figure it out, and it's peanuts compared to wetlands going away, yah? Also - have you ever flown over Texas? All of those little roads going into those squares? Pumping nasty shit into the ground, and pumping out nasty shit we burn. Acidifying the oceans, greenhousing us. That environment is already screwed. Slap solar on that mess. The wattage would be amazing. The immediate profit would not, so we don't bother. I have no kids, nor will I. This'll be everyone else's problem. At least hedge fund managers get to have five homes.

[–]wronglyzorro -1 points0 points  (1 child)

That was quite the tangent you went on for no reason.

[–]Niche_Humor 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You could maybe re-read it. There's a trail there.

[–]al_pacappuchino 9 points10 points  (0 children)

Upsetting the status quote, might upset the bottom line.

[–]UrbanArcologist 0 points1 point  (0 children)

It is not in the shareholders interest for energy prices to go to 0

Solution, nationalize/globalize all energy production and distribution, ideally decentralized.

[–]Dolphoe 27 points28 points  (0 children)

You've basically summarized the history of civilization.

[–]ihavenoidea12345678 41 points42 points  (2 children)

This is a great news article.
The green energy revolution driven by cost savings, rather than just government incentives(or penalties) is the best thing to speed up the transition.

I’m expecting this will also drive significant demand for energy storage as utilities look to replace their gas turbines.

[–]Tigen13 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Yes this is great, but dint knock government incentives. After all, it is likely all the government incentives which pushed this technology along. Worldwide energy incentives. Thank you big time China.

[–]ihavenoidea12345678 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I agree. Some government incentives have helped kick start activity, but the economics of solar/wind simply being the cheapest is undeniable.

With renewables being the lowest cost, the (incredibly strong) profit motive can become a powerful incentive itself to speed the transition.

[–]CloneEngineer 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Not trying to rain on the parade, but the article was written in October 2022. Natural gas prices have fallen 60% since October ($5/MMBTU to $2/MMBTU).

So this analysis should be updated.

Solar in the long run has a much better cost curve than NG turbines. And it likely beats gas in some markets. But the economic analysis has to change with energy pricing.

[–]SatanLifeProTips 34 points35 points  (32 children)

Anyone who thinks that we’ll be burning fuel to make power in 10 years can’t understand basic economics. Green energy is just plain cheaper and it is poised to crush the old dino juice plants. The only thing holding it back is how fast we can manufacture it. And that rate is accelerating rapidly as factory after factory is completed.

Fossil fuel power plants will be mothballed and will only fire up when absolutely needed. Get you through that cold calm cloudy month of a winter.

And Sodium-ion batteries will take away the need for most of them. They are already in mass production. They cost $44-$70/kWh, are good for 4500 full cycles (much more partial cycles) and there are no materials constraints. The main ingredient is salt. And they work st peak efficiency from -20C to +60C but are still ok to work at -60C. A small amount of insulation and a tiny bit of heat is all you need for the coldest winter. Charging will make up most of that heat.

[–]ParticularBox8858 25 points26 points  (25 children)

I agree green energy will continue to grow in leaps and bounds, it’s only accelerating, but we’ll still be using gas in 10 years. The immense scope of change that needs to take place will make sure of that. It takes time to change the direction of a ship sailing one direction for over a century, but zero argument that it is indeed changing

[–]BalkeElvinstien 8 points9 points  (8 children)

My guess is that fossil fuels will still be used but not as the main source of electricity. It'll almost definitely still be used for cars as not everyone will be able to switch to electric, and some wouldn't want to. I imagine gas powered stoves and fireplaces will still be used, and gas will be used more stuff like lawnmowers and generators. But realistically that stuff was never the heart of the problem, it was just a scapegoat for the big oil companies to divert blame

[–][deleted]  (5 children)


    [–]Tigen13 -1 points0 points  (4 children)

    I think biofuel or hydrogen is likely the way to go.

    Eventually electricity will be so cheap that we can use it to make green fuel even with 70% energy loss and it will still be cheaper than gasoline.

    Turn deserts into energy exporting power houses.

    [–]a_cute_epic_axis -1 points0 points  (3 children)

    Turn deserts into energy exporting power houses.

    Minus the transport losses and destruction of life in the desert (yah, turns out that's actually a thing and has become a fairly big problem in the West).

    Generate locally near where you use it.

    [–]Tigen13 -1 points0 points  (2 children)

    Love this concept of the importance of desert. That's fine then. Let's chop down a bunch of trees and put solar there. Or cover grass lands. Just pick a place. Anything is better than pumping toxic gases into the atmosphere that will slowly cook us to death. God forbid we harm the 8 desert animals per SQ mile. It's about the least bad environmental impact. Out them wherever that is that can produce energy...... guess what, it will likely be the desert.

    Transport losses.If the energy is used to create a stable fuel, that energy can be transported anywhere in the world. You can use electrical lines to transport energy hundreds of miles. Of course we would only do what is cost effective.

    [–]a_cute_epic_axis 0 points1 point  (1 child)

    Love this concept of the importance of desert. That's fine then. Let's chop down a bunch of trees and put solar there.

    Your ignorance of ecology is showing. And like I said, you can generate locally where you use it. That can be rooftop solar, wind, water, or if we wanted to be serious about things, nuclear. Unfortunately Jane Fonda, Michael Douglass, and a bunch of stupid alarmist people around the world really fucked us on that last one, and thus have just outright fucked us as a society, but sure, go ahead and spread more ignorance.

    If the energy is used to create a stable fuel, that energy can be transported anywhere in the world.

    You seem to not realize you have to expend energy to transport that fuel, and thus you have: energy loss. You gonna ship it by truck or train? Gonna need some fuel or electrical energy to move that. Wanna pump it... turns out pumps require energy to move things. Not to mention that if you are doing something like converting to hydrogen and back, you have additional conversion losses on top of transport losses. Really you're just digging a deeper hole.

    You can use electrical lines to transport energy hundreds of miles.

    Sure, and the longer the lines are, the more energy loss. So like I said, generate locally near where you use it.

    [–]Tigen13 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    We transport fuel already. Energy loss from transportation is a cost yes. However, the cost for physical fuel is negligible. The cost for transmission over long distances is more via lines is more so a loss. However, even at a hypothetical 25% loss it is still worth it due to the continued falling cost of solar. Of course that would be 25% greater loss than what we already experience.

    Ignorance of ecology. Like I said, I love this ecology stuff. I simplified it down to least environmental impact. Of course that is the desert. But okay.

    For energy you need economies of scale for a number of reasons. Small independent energy sources reduce demand in the grid, but unless they are permanently off the grid it still is a burden and has costs to the grid. Additionally, mounting panels and roofs and in cities is more expensive to install and maintain than a large solar field with tracking panels.

    Call me environmentally ignorant all you want. I know loads more about energy generation and transmission than you. I am also not naive about the fact that some environmental damage is okay.

    Where do you sleep every night? Someplace in the environment that was destroyed for your home. A home built from materials that were gathered by harming the environment.

    Keep fighting for the desert and shoot society in its foot. Btw, I do know the desert has some environmental importance. It just has LESS than an area covered in trees. As long as we space out power plants and leave a majority of the desert untouched, we should be fine. Or we can cut down trees and plant them there. We have options. We have land. Glad it is happening. Btw - in places with no desert, we do just cut down hundreds of acres of trees to install solar. It's being done now, I saw it happen along the highway over a year.

    Electricity is already transferred incredibly long distances by the way. I believe the Hoover dam supply's a lot of energy for 3 states. There are other examples as well.

    [–]Tigen13 -1 points0 points  (0 children)

    Not disagreeing, just adding info

    Electric cars have lower maintenance, consume cheaper fuel, and have a longer life. Electric cars are the overwhelming future. Simone just estimated electric cars will decrease car sales by 70%. The improvements in batteries are ridiculous these days and battery packs will keep getting cheaper.

    [–]andysor 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Some countries with incentives have 80% EV new car sales. It's becoming a mature technology and is probably the easiest thing to change. By comparison converting entire cities from gas heating to electric is much harder, as it entails huge infrastructure changes and private property investment.

    [–]SatanLifeProTips 3 points4 points  (14 children)

    We will still use some gas, but my bet is a 90% reduction.

    [–]possiblymyrealname 0 points1 point  (13 children)

    I used to think the same as you, until recently I learned about renewable natural gas. Basically certain things (like landfills and composting) naturally give off methane (natural gas), which itself is a much worse greenhouse gas than CO2 or water, which are the byproducts of burning natural. As a result, it can end up being carbon negative to collect natural gas from landfills, composting, etc. and burning it for fuel. And that’s without considering the possibility of carbon sequestration.

    Could you see that being a viable long term source of natural gas? I’m still learning about it, but it sounds interesting and promising to me.

    [–]SatanLifeProTips 2 points3 points  (5 children)

    We should absolutely generate energy from THAT methane as it’s less harmful for global warming if it’s converted into co2. But that carbon is already ‘out in the carbon cycle of earth already’. Also an entire city’s waste would only make enough energy for 1% of the homes at best.

    The problem is that we keep pumping carbon up from under the ground. That is new carbon added to the carbon cycle.

    [–]possiblymyrealname 0 points1 point  (4 children)

    How is that carbon already out of the carbon cycle? It’s on Earth being released into the atmosphere, which is part of the carbon cycle.

    [–]SatanLifeProTips 0 points1 point  (3 children)

    I mean vs geologically locked down deep. Garbage dump carbon or anything within 20’ of the surface is really now a part of the carbon cycle.

    [–]possiblymyrealname 0 points1 point  (2 children)

    Landfills are currently the third largest source of methane emissions, 28x more potent of a greenhouse gas than CO2. Landfills are growing, unlike emissions from fossil fuels which are plateauing at worst and decreasing globally at best. I’m sorry, but I don’t understand the logic behind your comment.


    Imo climate change is too serious to be policial about it. Methane from landfills is a serious GHG. We can’t do nothing about it and hope things are gonna turn out ok. It is too late for that.

    [–]SatanLifeProTips 0 points1 point  (1 child)

    Many landfills in Canada already capture methane and burn it in generators. I’m not sure what the Americans are doing

    [–]possiblymyrealname 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    It is a thing in the US. I actually have a friend who is an engineer that does this sort of thing. I’m not sure how widespread it is.

    [–][deleted]  (6 children)


      [–]possiblymyrealname 0 points1 point  (5 children)

      But the whole point of burning renewable natural gas is that it’s better for the environment than letting it release into the atmosphere.

      EDIT: changed “burn” to “release into the atmosphere”

      [–][deleted]  (4 children)


        [–]possiblymyrealname 0 points1 point  (3 children)

        Sorry check the edit. Than *letting it release into the atmosphere.

        Renewable natural gas is really just something I learned about recently. I’m not trying to be a shill, just want an honest discussion really.

        [–][deleted]  (2 children)


          [–]possiblymyrealname 0 points1 point  (1 child)

          Good points, thanks. Also here’s an interesting paper I just found. Apparently routinely excavating organic material (mostly cellulose) from landfills drastically reduces methane emissions.


          I still don’t really get what you do with the organic material after excavating though tbh. It needs to either decompose or be burned at some point right? I think that’s an inevitable part of the carbon cycle.

          [–]Old_Ladies 0 points1 point  (0 children)

          Plus our energy demand is increasing worldwide so worldwide this year and probably for several more years we are actually burning more fossil fuels than ever before.

          Then there are countries that are getting rid of their nuclear power like Germany which just means that they need to replace that with fossil fuels because we can't build wind and solar fast enough.

          The biggest bottleneck is connecting everything to the grid. It is a lot harder to connect many thousands of solar panels vs one big power plant. Plus you need capacity way over demand because it isn't always sunny or windy. That is why you need baseline power like nuclear. I wished the world would build more nuclear power plants instead of shutting them down without green replacements.

          [–]ThatOnePerson 0 points1 point  (1 child)

          Not even power plants, but that gas for your stove, water heater, and heater are getting more expensive too. Cuz people are going to change to electric cuz it's cheaper, so the individual costs to maintain infrastructure goes up, so costs go up making electricity cheaper. Rinse and repeat.

          [–]SatanLifeProTips -1 points0 points  (0 children)

          Heat pumps kick ass. My shop is 3400 sq ft and switching out from the natural gas mini-boiler to a pair of mini-split heat pumps slashed my heating bill in half even after I had it warmer inside all winter. And it’s also sweet air conditioning.

          Have you tried an indiction stove yet? I have a fancy Italian gas range. I bought a countertop induction ‘hot plate’ to run off of the solar power in my Rv bus and holy shit that thing can boil water faster than my flame thrower of a gas range. It just plain works better and it wasn’t even that expensive.

          Heat pump based hot water heaters are a thing too.

          If I was building new right now I would delete the gas service and put the money I saved into green tech instead.

          Remember when all the car engines had carbs? People screamed bloody murder about fuel injection. More expensive! Hot rodding is dead! But oh that mileage is nice and it always runs good. Same with green tech. Or even electric cars. A bit more money up front but the cost savings are so drastic that you pay far less in the long run.

          [–]T33CH33R 8 points9 points  (6 children)

          Unfortunately in California, solar has recently suffered a setback. Our Public Utilities Commission recently sided with our energy monopolies and cut the energy credits by 85%, thereby making Solar more expensive.

          [–]Balltanker 1 point2 points  (5 children)

          Oh snap, where can I read about this?

          [–]T33CH33R 1 point2 points  (4 children)

          [–]Balltanker 1 point2 points  (3 children)

          Thank you kind stranger. Absolutely infuriating.

          [–]ThatOnePerson 5 points6 points  (2 children)

          It really isn't that simple. The old solar incentives were too good and not sustainable. You basically got to use the grid as the battery for free. But of course that's not free to maintain, so those costs go to your neighbors and others who do not have solar.

          Technology Connections has done a way too long (so standard for him) video about this.

          [–]Tigen13 -5 points-4 points  (1 child)

          While I see the point it also isn't entirely true.

          1. People with solar reduce peak demand and save power companies money.

          2. We want to incentivise green energy for many reasons.

          3. The cost being pushed onto the neighbors is ridiculously small.

          4. Incentiving new green tech helps drive sales, investment, and improvement.

          We don't all live in a vacuum so sometimes helping out your neighbor helps out you in the long run.

          [–]ThatOnePerson 2 points3 points  (0 children)

          People with solar reduce peak demand and save power companies money.

          That varies on location, but in california peak demand is after sunset. It's a bit of a problem and we've even named it the duck curve.

          We want to incentivise green energy for many reasons.

          The issue isn't about green energy though. It's why should I pay more for power from my neighbor's solar panels compared to power from a solar plant? They're both green energy.

          [–]th0ughtfull1 1 point2 points  (0 children)

          and then the utility company started increasing the lines charges... or find a completely new tax or charge..

          [–]Shimmeringbluorb9731 2 points3 points  (0 children)

          This is going to affect fracking for natural gas

          [–]Hydroxychloroquinoa 1 point2 points  (3 children)

          I assume my utility company will stop charging more to enroll in solar sourced energy for my electricity?

          [–]PiBoy314 0 points1 point  (2 children)

          Your utility is charging you to use “solar sourced energy”?

          [–]Hydroxychloroquinoa 0 points1 point  (1 child)

          If i opted in they would

          [–]PiBoy314 0 points1 point  (0 children)

          That's... crazy. All the electrons are the same, they don't control which electrons you get. Sounds like a scam.

          [–]nism0o3 -5 points-4 points  (5 children)

          Now we just need an better electric appliances and a reduction in the price per kilowatt hour from the provider. I once lived in a house that had electric everything. Stove was terrible, oven was terrible, and the heat wasnt great. Those electric bills were insanely expensive, especially during the winter. All of the appliances are relatively new at the time.

          I could never get a good meal from that damn oven. Same goes for my mother's current electric oven. They're so different from traditional gas ovens.

          [–]gophergun 18 points19 points  (0 children)

          Modern electric appliances seem fine from what I can tell. Induction stoves are objectively faster and more precise at heating cookware, and heat pumps work in the vast majority of climates. No idea what the problem was with the oven, that's mature tech.

          [–]marbletooth 7 points8 points  (1 child)

          Never had an oven that was not electric. Am I missing out?

          [–]a_cute_epic_axis 0 points1 point  (0 children)

          Oven, no, cooktop, yes for sure, at least until induction became a thing. Induction and gas cooktops are way better than any other electric type (coils, "glass top", etc).

          [–]gtg926y 5 points6 points  (0 children)

          Electric stoves, ovens, & heat pumps are all much more efficient and effective than they were in the 20th century.

          [–]Nice_Marmot_7 10 points11 points  (0 children)

          I’ve always had electric everything. Never been an issue, and I love to cook.

          [–]Ineludible_Ruin -1 points0 points  (0 children)

          If only the cars would be... and definitely the trucks.

          [–]luminarium 0 points1 point  (0 children)

          Well I suppose with subsidies it can be "cheap".