Solar and solar resources could provide 80% of the electricity demand in the United States, US researchers reported in an article published February 27, 2018 in the journal Energy & Environmental Science . But managing electricity demand with 100% solar and wind energy remains difficult, as it would require improved storage systems (especially batteries) in order to maintain electricity for several weeks despite adverse weather conditions. " The sun goes down and the wind does not always blow ", summarized in a statement Steven Davis, co-author of the study and professor of earth system science University of California-Irvine. Solar and wind are indeed intermittent sources of renewable energy.
35 years of meteorological data being sifted
He and his team analyzed 35 years (from 1980 to 2015) of meteorological data US. " We observed the variation of solar and wind energy in both time and space and compared it to US demand for electricity ," said Steven Davis. " We have determined that we could reliably obtain about 80% of our electricity from these renewable sources by building a continental transmission grid or facilities that can maintain the equivalent of twelve hours of domestic consumption. electricity "he continued. This would require an investment " very important, but not inconceivable ," noted researchers, also from the California Institute of Technology and the Carnegie Institution for Science.
The United States remains the biggest polluter behind China
The United States currently generate about two thirds of their electricity with fossil resources (natural gas, coal, oil) which contributes to the rise in global temperature by releasing greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. And a fifth comes from nuclear power plants. Renewable energies represent only 15% of the energy mix: wind contributes 7%, solar energy 1%, ahead of other sources such as hydro, according to the American Energy Information Authority. The researchers want the United States, the second largest polluter behind China, to finally consider developing energy sources with low greenhouse gas emissions.