The combination of wind and solar power should be sufficient to meet current energy needs in “developed, developed countries,” . Researchers from the University of California, Irvine (UCI), Tsinghua University of China, Carnegie Institution for Science and Caltech looked at 39 years of data needed per hour from 42 countries to determine if there was enough wind and solar energy. to meet the requirements.
They found that reliable systems, in which wind power is the most common, were able to meet energy needs in the countries studied between 72 and 91 percent of the time, and this before considering storage. Increase storage capacity to 12 hours of power, and renewable energy sources can achieve between 83 and 94 percent of electrical energy per hour. However, the researchers found that although wind and solar sources could exceed 90 percent of the region’s electricity, there could still be hundreds of hours a year when demand is not met.
“Wind and solar can meet the needs of more than 80 percent in many places without conserving too much energy or producing too much energy, which is very important,” said co-author Steven Davis, a professor of Earth science at UCI. “But depending on the country, there may be many days to day throughout the year when other needs will have to be met and energy conservation and other non-oil resources in the future.”
There are geophysical challenges in the game. The paper suggests that it would be easier for major countries near the equator to switch to sustainable energy, as they can rely on solar energy throughout the year. Germany, for example, may struggle to meet its many needs through wind and solar, because it is a small country located at a high altitude.
One way would be for neighboring countries to consolidate their resources. “Stability and reliability can be provided by a system that includes solar power from Spain, Italy and Greece and hurricanes found in the Netherlands, Denmark and the Baltic region,” said Dan Tong, assistant professor of Earth System science at Tsinghua University. and a major author on paper, he said.
Many countries are reducing their dependence on oil, which is crucial in reducing carbon emissions and reducing oil exposure. . Europe produced more electricity from renewable sources in 2020 than did its original oil, according to from two think groups with green energy.
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