Good news for O&G… producers

Sometimes you gotta question your premises – say on renewables “replacing” fossil fuels. In this spirit, your Eyewitness offers these extracts from “Limits to Green Energy Are Becoming Much Clearer”, taken from “Our finite world” by Gail Tverberg. Google the site for the data and graph etc.
“We have been told that intermittent electricity from wind and solar, perhaps along with hydroelectric generation (hydro), can be the basis of a green economy. Things are increasingly not working out as planned, however. Natural gas or coal used for balancing the intermittent output of renewables is increasingly high-priced or not available. It is becoming clear that modelers who encouraged the view that a smooth transition to wind, solar, and hydro is possible have missed some important points.
[1] It is becoming clear that intermittent wind and solar cannot be counted on to provide adequate electricity supply when the electrical distribution system needs them. Early modelers did not expect that the variability of wind and solar would be a huge problem. They seemed to believe that, with the use of enough intermittent renewables, their variability would cancel out. Alternatively, long transmission lines would allow enough transfer of electricity between locations to largely offset variability.
In practice, variability is still a major problem.
2] Adequate storage for electricity is not feasible in any reasonable timeframe. This means that if cold countries are not to “freeze in the dark” during winter, fossil fuel backup is likely to be needed for many years in the future. One workaround for electricity variability is storage. (But the) “lead analyst for EU Power, says that low or zero-emissions backup-capacity is “still more than a decade away from being available at scale.”
3] After many years of subsidies and mandates, today’s green electricity is only a tiny fraction of what is needed to keep our current economy operating. Early modelers did not consider how difficult it would be to ramp up green electricity. Compared to today’s total world energy consumption (electricity and non-electricity energy, such as oil, combined), wind and solar are truly insignificant
4] Even as a percentage of electricity, rather than total energy, renewables still comprised a relatively small share in 2020. Wind and solar don’t replace “dispatchable” generation; they provide some temporary electricity supply, but they tend to make the overall electrical system more difficult to operate because of the variability introduced.
5] Most modelers have not understood that reserve to production ratios greatly overstate the amount of fossil fuels and other minerals that the economy will be able to extract. The problem is that the world economy tends to run short of many types of resources simultaneously.
6] The world economy seems already to be reaching limits on the extraction of coal and natural gas to be used for balancing electricity provided by intermittent renewables.”

“Modelers and leaders everywhere have had a basic misunderstanding of how the economy operates and what limits we are up against. This misunderstanding has allowed scientists to put together models that are far from the situation we are actually facing. The economy operates as an integrated whole, just as the body of a human being operates as an integrated whole, rather than a collection of cells of different types.
“The economy is facing many limits simultaneously: too many people, too much pollution, too few fish in the ocean, more difficult to extract fossil fuels, and many others. The way these limits play out seems to be the way the models in the 1972 book, The Limits to Growth, suggest: They play out on a combined basis. The real problem is that diminishing returns lead to huge investment needs in many areas simultaneously.
One or two of these investment needs could perhaps be handled, but not all of them, all at once.”

COP26 set a “net zero emission” goal by 2050. But, as Kant advised, “ought” to imply “can”.
The above suggests we can’t. We’ll still need fossil fuels past then. Drill baby, drill!!