On the BRITEside: Our Energy Future

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Say what you want about “global warming”, CO2 emissions are real & dangerous

Energy is a trendy term in the news and media. While the reality of global warming is a heated public debate, one fact is indisputable: the use of fossil fuels as a source of energy is responsible for increased CO2 emissions and pollution across the Earth. This pollution has adversely affected all life from acid rain to poor air quality in cities.

Global warming activists have rallied around the support for and implementation of renewable energy technologies. While their intentions may be well meaning, it’s not as easy to switch to renewable energy as you might think.

The problem with renewables

Renewable energy is great. It produces energy from the resources we have here on Earth every day. What’s not to love? Well, there’s not much bad about renewable energy tech but it can get a little ugly. Even though over $150 billion was spent on the research and development of renewable energy technologies between 2009 and 2015, it still has a long way to go before it’s ready for primetime.

The technology is not scalable in its current form and it has a long way to go before we can scale the technology to replace fossil fuels outright. When the time comes, energy storage – like batteries, hydrogen storage and more – will be key to the success of renewable energy as we cannot create energy on demand the ways we can with fossil fuels.

The non-renewable solution

It’s fossil fuels! Humor us for a minute. Until renewable energy tech is advanced enough, and the tech is scalable to meet the energy demands of people all around the world, we will continue to be reliant on fossil fuels. This doesn’t mean we have to put up with the high emissions created by fossil fuels.

Enter carbon capture. Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage varies in application context and methodology, but the end result is similar: CCUS systems reduce the amount of carbon that goes into the atmosphere, therefore reducing the impact of emissions on Earth.

Is carbon capture ready?

More than ready, it’s already here! CCUS systems have been around for some time. The systems considered “nice to have” 15 years ago will not only be necessary but inevitable in the coming years. And if about 10% of our energy sources are accompanied by CCUS, we can achieve an atmospheric increase in temperature that’s less than 1.5% measured in degrees Celsius.

Where does BRITE stand?

BRITE is an “energy agnostic” incubator. This means we support all energy technologies because we belief that improving a current system with a new innovation will always be better. We are more than excited to see innovation in renewable technologies, and we support many startups who are making those changes.

However, we recognize that every technology comes with caveats alongside any gains and renewable technology is not currently sustainable for our needs. That’s why we’re excited to see development in energy technology in the form of CCUS systems and we’re excited by the positive effect their use has on the emissions created by energy from fossil fuels.

Enjoyed this piece? We’re glad! We wrote this after Dr. Grigorios Panagakos spoke at our BRITEside Chat on August 13, 2020. The BRITEside Chat was created as an opportunity to encourage networking and personal development among energy tech startups and stakeholders. We host BRITEside Chats every Thursday at 5:30 PM ET and we encourage you to reach out to Daniel Sylak, Marketing & Events Specialist if you would like to join us. He can be reached via email or phone: Daniel@brite.org | 330.395.3500 ext. 4

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