Chase Economic Stability or ‘Save the Planet?’ The Question May Now Be Moot

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by | Jun 30, 2017

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Companies like Facebook, Microsoft and Google are increasingly excited about the use of renewable energy to power their data centers, and renewables account for more than half of new power sources going on line. With these evolvements in the renewable energy industry, argument like whether we should “save the planet” or chase economic stability when it comes to energy may be moot. In fact, the shift to renewable energy may be happening much faster than most well-educated business people understand, according to British investor Jeremy Grantham, cofounder of the Boston-based asset manager firm GMO, Britain’s Financial Times (via the Christian Science Monitor).

Additionally, a big change in the fundamental investing world is heading our way, as well, Grantham said last spring, driven by two external factors: climate change and resource limits.

Much of the growth of renewable energy can be attributed to two things: governments and businesses are increasingly dedicated to funding cleaner energy sources, and the price of renewables, particularly wind and solar, is plummeting. In fact, the article cites International Renewable Energy Agency stats that the price of solar panels is down by 80% and the cost of wind turbines has shrunk by close to a third.

Also driving the growth of the renewable energy sector is the fact that the problem of battery storage capacity is being solved – in part thanks to the auto manufacturing industry, which is placing a huge investment in battery powered vehicles and thus focusing on battery capacity and price.

Though President Trump has shifted policy focus toward oil and gas,  businesses, municipalities and state governments have overwhelmingly lined up to support the continued pursuit of fossil fuel alternatives. More than 250 mayors are currently meeting at the US Conference of Mayors in Florida to vote on a resolution to commit to having US city governments run entirely on renewables by 2035, writes the Huffington Post.

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