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Climate Change Emergency: Renewable Energy

[I]t's physically impossible to replace all primary fossil fuel energy on a business-as-usual scale with renewables. . . . [W]e need to radically reduce energy consumption and use renewables to actually retire fossil fuel infrastructure."

Nikiforuk, Andrew. “It Bears Repeating: Renewables Alone Won’t End the Climate Crisis.” The Tyee, 19 Nov. 2019,

"[T]he world needs to face some hard facts that suggest we are headed toward catastrophe. . . . [D]espite rapid growth in wind and solar generation, the green energy transition is not really happening. . . . [I]n most recent years . . . the uptick in global demand for electrical energy exceeded the total output of the world’s entire 30-year accumulation of solar power installations. Between 2017 and 2018, the demand increase outpaced total solar supply by 60 per cent; two years’ demand increase absorbs the entire output of solar and wind power combined. . . . Also problematic is the fact that wind/solar energy is not really renewable. In practice, the life expectancy of a wind turbine may be less than 15 years. Solar panels may last a few years longer but with declining efficiency, so both turbines and panels have to be replaced regularly at great financial, energy and environmental cost. Consider that building a typical wind turbine requires 817 energy-intensive tonnes of steel, 2,270 tonnes of concrete and 41 tonnes of non-recyclable plastic."

Rees, William E. "Don’t Call Me a Pessimist on Climate Change. I Am a Realist." The Tyee, 11 Nov. 2019,

"Wind turbines are the most visible symbols of the quest for renewable electricity generation. And yet, although they exploit the wind, which is as free and as green as energy can be, the machines themselves are pure embodiments of fossil fuels" (27).

Smil, Vaclav. "What I See When I See a Wind Turbine." IEEE Spectrum, vol. 53, no. 3, Mar. 2016, p. 27,