A “New Deal” For Energy

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Originally published on Lenz Blog.
By Karl-Friedrich Lenz

The term “New Deal” usually refers to legislation under the Roosevelt administration in the United States.

The idea behind that is a new deal of cards. People were not happy at the time, reasonably so, since the economic situation was unfortunate for many. So Roosevelt used the metaphor of a new deal at a card game, which obviously favors those that don’t hold good cards right now.

For the purpose of this post, I see the original deal of cards for energy in the allocation of fossil fuel reserves. Saudi Arabia got a couple of aces. Japan has been much less fortunate.

The point is that after the transition to renewable energy, each country will be responsible for their energy base. If you invest a lot of money in renewable energy infrastructure, you will end up with more energy than a country that continues burning fossil fuel.

And the first deal of cards was completely random. Saudi Arabia did nothing to earn the aces they got in the fossil fuel game. In contrast, with renewable energy infrastructure, every country has a chance to get to the top through their own efforts.

Having a great renewable energy base is of course a desirable position to be in. It means that you get paid by other countries importing energy from your renewable sources, as opposed to having to pay them.

So even if you think global warming was a hoax the Chinese invented for April fool’s day in 2016, you should still support a fast transition to renewable. This transition makes sense as a nationalist policy. It also creates quite a lot of jobs that can’t be outsourced to some other country, since they are based on installing renewable energy infrastructure.

Germany already sees large electricity export surplus numbers. That’s because Germany has been installing a lot for solar and wind (before they slammed on the brakes massively lately). And every bit of energy they get from their own renewable energy infrastructure doesn’t need to be imported from OPEC or Russia. Good for the bottom line and good for supply security.

Reprinted with permission.

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