I thought this was pretty neat, and wanted to share this article on CNN.com by Matt Ford on the green energy supergrid Europe is developing. Excerpts are below.
“It is a criticism frequently leveled at those promoting wind or solar power as an alternative to fossil fuels: what happens when the wind doesn’t blow or the sun doesn’t shine?
Well, now there is a smart answer, at least in Europe — we’ll simply and instantly switch to another source of clean, green power.”
“Plans for a massive electricity grid dedicated to uniting the varied sources of renewable energy available in northern Europe have taken a step forward in January as nine countries formally agreed to work together on the project.
Using thousands of miles of high-tech undersea cables the ‘supergrid’ will unite wind farms on blustery British coasts with Dutch and Belgian tidal power, the vast hydroelectric potential of Norway fjords and Germany’s massive solar arrays.”
“Of course, none of this will come cheap. The EWEA estimates the cost for building a grid connecting countries across the North Sea region including the Baltic Sea, Irish Sea and English Channel would cost in the region of $40 billion. A report by Greenpeace in 2008 came in lower, putting the price of building a similar grid at $20-30 billion.”
“None of this will happen overnight, but EWEA believe it is feasible for 100 percent of Europe’s electricity to come from renewable sources by 2050.
“There are technological barriers for some renewables, but in wind we have proven technology that delivers competitively,”