Yesterday’s Gone, a report funded by the Government of Canada’s Future Skills Centre says that it identifies 8 megatrends with the potential to impact employment in Canada by 2030. The report says that the “goal of this research is to explore these technological, social, economic, environmental and political changes and to inform the design of skills-demand programs and policy responses.“
A recent report from Canada’s Future Skills Centre (funded by the Canadian government) talks of a future ‘Green Energy Revolution,’ that could result in the ‘use of rolling blackouts’ and / or ‘social pressure to conserve energy by 2030.
“Producing carbon-free energy has never been cheaper. In fact, the IEA claims that solar is now the cheapest electricity in history. Additionally, the urgency of the climate crisis and shifting consumer preferences are creating an enormous economic opportunity in green energy and carbon-free transportation,” reads the report.
It continues saying;
“In Canada, investment in the green energy sector is expected to increase 46% by 2030, while recent private and public sector support in electric cars and trucks from across the political spectrum, such as automaker Ford’s $1.8 billion investment that was backed by both the Ontario Conservatives and Federal Liberals, suggests significant development in carbon-free transportation over the coming decade. This may lead to an employment boom in green energy–related occupations and new demand for relevant skills.”
It then starts making hypothetical scenarios about what this will mean for Canada by 2030.
“In 2030 this could mean”
- There could be wide-scale implementation of policies like carbon tariffs and tax cuts for green energy companies.
- We may see increases in individual and corporate energy usage monitoring, time-of-use pricing, use of rolling blackouts, or social pressure to conserve energy.
- Despite being regarded as a relatively cleaner energy source, natural gas might no longer be socially acceptable to use in commercial and residential development.”
“Labour market implications”
It then goes on to talk about labour market implications.
- “Population distributions may shift towards regions particularly suited to wind and solar energy generation, which could lead to new economic opportunities in rural and coastal areas.
- Demand for batteries could soar, both for green energy storage and in electric vehicles (EVs).
- Prospective employees may choose where to work based on a company’s carbon footprint and adoption of green energy corporate policies (e.g., EV charging stations)
- The availability of low-cost energy could stimulate significant development in tech, leading to growth in areas like quantum computing.
- Climate science (and associated knowledge and skills) may become incorporated into fields such as underwriting and risk analysis.”
I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to live in a reality where the power goes on and off via rolling blackouts. Full sustainability of green energy isn’t possible anyways just look at the facts.
According to an article from the Manhattan Institute titled “Mines, Minerals, and “Green” Energy: A Reality Check”;
- The building of wind turbines, solar powers and batteries for electric vehicles on average uses 10 times the quantity of materials when compared to building machines using hydrocarbons to deliver the same amount of energy.
- A single electric car uses more cobalt than 1,000 smartphone batteries.
- The blades on a single wind turbine have more plastic than 5 million smartphones and a solar array that can power one data centre uses more glass than 50 million phones.
- “A single electric car battery weighing 1,000 pounds requires extracting and processing some 500,000 pounds of materials. Averaged over a battery’s life, each mile of driving an electric car “consumes” five pounds of earth. Using an internal combustion engine consumes about 0.2 pounds of liquids per mile.”
- “Oil, natural gas, and coal are needed to produce the concrete, steel, plastics, and purified minerals used to build green machines. The energy equivalent of 100 barrels of oil is used in the processes to fabricate a single battery that can store the equivalent of one barrel of oil.”
- By 2050 with the current plans, the quantity of worn-out solar panels—much of which is not recyclable — will double the tonnage of today’s global plastic waste;
- Over 3 million tons per year of non-recyclable plastics from worn-out wind turbine blades.
- By 2030, more than 10 million tons per year of batteries will become garbage.
Doesn’t look so green now, does it?
What do you think about this government funded report? Does the discussion of potential rolling blackouts or social pressures regarding a green energy revolution concern you?
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