THE FUTURE OF RENEWABLE ENERGY DEPENDS ON CHINA

Thanks to its very name—renewable energy—we can picture a time in the not-too-distant future when our need for non-renewable fuels like oil, natural gas, and coal will vanish.

Indeed, the Biden administration has announced a breakthrough target of 2035 for fully eliminating US reliance on those non-renewable fuels for the generation of electricity. That would be accomplished by “deploying carbon-pollution-free electricity-generating resources,” primarily the everlasting power of the wind and sun. With other nations moving in a similar direction, it’s tempting to conclude that the days when competition over finite supplies of energy was a recurring source of conflict will soon draw to a close. Unfortunately, think again: While the sun and wind are indeed infinitely renewable, the materials needed to convert those resources into electricity—minerals like cobalt, copper, lithium, nickel, and the rare earth elements, or REEs—are anything but. Some of them, in fact, are far scarcer than petroleum, suggesting that global strife over vital resources may not, in fact, disappear in the Age of Renewables.

Leia o artigo de Michael T. Klare em https://www.thenation.com/article/environment/renewable-energy-war-china/

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