Conversion to Green Energy is a Mirage on the Horizon
January 10, 2024
Article by Jeffrey Price
Just how long will it take to convert the US economy over to a genuinely “green energy” system? Five years? Ten? Multiple decades??? The answer is that it’s waaaay out there and any perceptions that it will be sooner fly in the face of cold hard facts.
The Wall Street Journal published a relevant article laden with data and graphs (click here for article) that overwhelmingly indicate that the notion of a rapid transformation of the American economy – much less the world economy – away from fossil fuels to nuclear and renewables (i.e., “clean” energy) is decades out. Among the more provocative graphs was one that showed that EVs currently constitute 10% of all new vehicle sales. That means that today’s fleet of motor vehicles in the United States remains destined to be overwhelmingly gasoline (or diesel) fueled for a long, long time since the average life of a vehicle now stretches well past 10 years. The notion of a rapid conversion to green energies is a pipe dream.
Another myth that is debunked in the article is the notion that the electrical generating industry can somehow shed itself of natural gas-fired generating plants. There is no replacement in the wings. Exactly one nuclear plant is underway in the U.S. and it is woefully behind schedule and over-budget. Of course, China and France are building nukes (along with the Russians), but the rest of the world is shunning them. In fact, countries like India and China continue to construct coal-fired generating plants – that means that new consumers of coal are being activated. That notion is regrettable considering the abundance of cleaner-burning NG. Solar is laudable, but there’s no funding to scale-up to truly change out fossil fuel-fired generation facilities.
And what about wind? It’s laughable as the windiest places in the U.S. aren’t anywhere near the factories and people. And, did you know that soup-to-nuts for new transmission lines – lovely things that they are – is measured in decades? Of course, Nantucket is windy. But oh those folks – with clout – don’t want to look at those garish contraptions.
So, in the meantime, NG and oil are here and that’s going to be for decades! Therefore, the Delaware Basin, of which Pecos is the hub, will continue to grow as one of the primary engines that will produce NG, the abundant transition fuel. And, First Keystone is supporting this industry with our focus on Pecos warehouses to lease which is an essential cog in the O&G industries’ infrastructure to provide this vital resource. In conclusion, as “feel good” as it is to advocate “clean” energy sources, the duration of the process to get to that endgame is measured in decades. Indeed, clean energy, the transition is somewhere way over the horizon. In the meantime, communities like Pecos, Texas are essential to keep cars moving, homes lit, and factories working.
The opinions expressed above reflect only those of the author and do not represent those of the First Keystone Pecos Industrial Park organization. First Keystone welcomes responsible fact-based discourses on these topics.