Last month, Britain went for a full day without turning on its coal-fired power stations for the first time in more than 130 years.
China recently ordered 13 provinces to cancel 104 coal-fired projects in development, equivalent to almost half of the 305 gigawatts of the U.S.’ entire coal capacity. Of these 104 developments, 47 of them were already under construction.
Three technologies – solar, batteries and electric vehicles (EVs) – are poised to disrupt a $6 trillion energy industry over the next two decades.
Over the last 30 years, solar prices have dropped by a factor of 100 and in some Sunbelt countries, solar is already undercutting coal and natural gas.
In 2016, Chile and the United Arab Emirates broke records in generating electricity from the sunshine for less than 3 cents a kilowatt-hour, half the average global cost of coal power. This year Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Mexico are poised to hold auctions and tenders which could see solar generation prices fall even further.
Every major car manufacturer is working on electric vehicles – the number of EV models on the market has grown from 2 in 2010 to over 25 today.
GROWTH MANTRA’S PREDICTION
China’s cancellation of its big coal plants is evidence that the world is entering an energy mind shift. This signals the first step towards a future of declining use and reliance on coal in China and around the world.
With China recently issuing its first ever ‘red alert’ due to smoke levels breaking all air pollution levels, this may be the catalyst that forces China to become the leader in the climate change movement.
We believe the coal industry will be faced with many challenges in the coming years if the cost of solar continues on its current demonetization trajectory.
One limitation of solar is that it’s only available during the day so we expect to see many breakthroughs in battery technology to help us transition fully into a solar economy.
Within the next two decades, it is predicted that electronic cars will be the cheapest and most widely used vehicles on the market.
The convergence of solar, batteries and electric vehicles will create disruptive forces that will hit the energy industry over the next two decades like never before.
As new technologies continue to drive down the cost of solar, batteries and electric vehicles, we expect the pace of consumer adoption will accelerate within the next 5 years. This will create new economies of scale which will further drive down the cost and create a new economy of energy and technologies.