Could we really be as dependent on fossil fuels in 2034 as we are today? In The New York TImes on Friday, I write about a projection from energy consultants Black & Veatch that sees fossil fuels continuing to play a dominant role in the United States a quarter century from now:
A quarter century from now the United States’ reliance on fossil fuels will have declined only marginally, according to a projection from Black & Veatch, the engineering and energy consulting firm.
In 2034, a mix of coal, natural gas and other fossil fuels will supply 68 percent of the nation’s energy needs, compared to 76 percent today. The share of energy production from renewable sources, including solar and wind, in 2034 will rise to 13 percent from 5 percent. Nuclear power will supply only 2 percent more electricity than it does in 2010, the firm said.
Those numbers were part of a presentation that Black & Veatch made to utility executives and other clients in Sacramento this week and which Mark Griffith, a managing director at the company, shared with The Times.
“We’re not assuming that greenhouse gas legislation leads to a immediate shutdown of all coal plants, nor does it lead to going directly to natural gas or renewables,” said Mr. Griffith.
However, Mr. Griffith acknowledged that a number of factors remain in flux that could change those dynamics, including the final shape of a cap-and-trade system – if one is implemented – and whether the United States imposes a requirement that all states obtain a percentage of their electricity from renewable sources.
You can read the rest of the story here.