Falling costs for electric vehicles and solar panels could be “gamechangers” that halt worldwide growth in demand for oil and coal by 2020, according to a new analysis conducted jointly by the Grantham Institute at Imperial College London and the Carbon Tracker Initiative. Polluting fuels could lose 10 percent of their market share to solar power and clean cars within a decade, the report concluded. Consider that a 10 percent loss of market share was enough to cause the collapse of the coal mining industry in the United States, and that Europe’s five major utilities lost 100 billion euros between 2008 and 2013 because they did not prepare for an 8 percent increase in renewables, the report said. By 2035, electric vehicles could make up 35 percent of the road transport market, and two-thirds by 2050, when it could displace 25 million barrels of oil per day. Meanwhile, the cost of solar has fallen 85 percent in seven years, and the report finds that solar could supply 23 percent of global power generation by 2040 and 29 percent by 2050, entirely phasing coal out and leaving natural gas with just a 1 percent share. Under such a scenario, coal and oil demand could peak in 2020, while the growth in gas demand could be curtailed.

– via The Guardian and Carbon Tracker Initiative

 

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