What will happen when energy is free?

Renewables are quickly becoming the cheapest version of power generation in many parts of the world.

In the U.S. today, solar and wind beat out conventional sources of energy in many regions. And in five years, without tax incentives, they are on track to be the cheapest energy source.

Utilities are seeing it. The government is seeing it. Anyone with insight into the industry is seeing it.

That’s why conservative energy giants are pooping their pants. They foresee disruption and worry about the future of some legacy industries. FYI: the “war on coal” is not some progressive coup; it’s the product of technological advancement. And oil and gas giants have been crossing their fingers that the price of oil would go back up. In the long term, it won’t. Phasing these conventional sources of energy out is a step in our energy revolution. When change comes, the answer is never “stop the change from happening;” it is, “how do I adjust to this change?”

Of course, a high penetration of renewables comes with challenges, and we still need to work on appropriate technological, market, and regulatory solutions to address these.

Cheap energy will not only be for the rich — for those who own a home and can install rooftop solar panels or a fancy solar roof. It will be available for everyone.

Thirty years ago, who thought that a worldwide encyclopedia would be free and instantly available at your fingertips?

PS: I recently quit my job in the oil & gas industry to work in clean energy.

2 thoughts on “What will happen when energy is free?

  1. Kudos to you on your career choices Michelle! I urge you to continue to feed your passion, with time, the wind may change but like sailing it will be up to your skills as a sailor to reach your destination regardless which way the wind blows. Sustainable energy is the answer.=)

    1. Thank you, Edwin. Let’s hope these next 3.5yrs do not set us back so much. The recent study that the DOE Sec. Perry has requested is ominous for clean energy progress, but alas, resistance to technological advancement can only last so long.

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