Renewable energy has drawbacks and environmental consequences

Renewable energy sources — wind, wave, solar, and the like — are generally the preferred energy sources of environmentalists. At the same time, there is no way to produce energy without some sort of environmental impact, and the more people you need energy for the greater the impact will be.

Some examples of environmental impacts from renewable energy:

Nonetheless, unintended side effects of renewable energy sometimes lead environmentalists to oppose it. In my view, they are missing how every energy source will have drawbacks and the question is how they relate to the drawbacks from alternatives, chiefly fossil fuels. Environmentalists can be too easily inclined to become perpetual and reflexive critics, always emphasizing the problems with any course of action and effectively acting as a blockage to any action.


Renewable energy options:

Environmentalist / NIMBY opposition to renewable projects:

Energy storage:

Transmission and grid interlinkage:

Demand shaping:

Politics of renewables:

Author: Milan

In the spring of 2005, I graduated from the University of British Columbia with a degree in International Relations and a general focus in the area of environmental politics. In the fall of 2005, I began reading for an M.Phil in IR at Wadham College, Oxford. Outside school, I am very interested in photography, writing, and the outdoors. I am writing this blog to keep in touch with friends and family around the world, provide a more personal view of graduate student life in Oxford, and pass on some lessons I've learned here.

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