According to the World Bank’s 1996 estimates, China was set to produce 9 gigawatts of wind energy and 0.5 gigawatts of solar PV by 2020. Those estimates were extremely conservative, considering China has already surpassed that with 62 gigawatts of wind and 3 gigawatts of PV in 2011.
Dr. Eric Martinot who conducted 2 years of research regarding renewable energy, says that we need to erase the conventional wisdom that the grid is unable to take a high capacity of renewables. He also dismisses the view that we need to improve on storage technologies before they can become widespread. “An 80 percent share [from renewables] is possible in most scenarios without large amounts of storage,” he explained.
Dr. Martinot envisions a day some time in the near future when rooftops will no longer be ‘bare’, and microgrids, community-scale systems, and autonomous-home systems will be in use everywhere.
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