After three years, I am proud to say that I have finally finished writing a draft of reNEWable! It’s in the editor’s hands now. I’m sure there will be some edits, changes, revisions, etc. But for all intents and purposes it’s all there. Phew.
A few random thoughts:
When I began the book, in 2008, Obama had just been elected and there was a general feeling that, among other things, he would be a great champion of renewable energy. Now, four years later, that excitement has become somewhat tempered. Given the massive financial and military crises that Obama has had to deal with, it’s not surprising that energy has not dominated his agenda. Even the most die-hard renewable enthusiasts will agree that there have been more pressing matters at stake. Still, though, I understand how those who hoped that Obama would usher in a new age of investment in renewables are now disappointed.
Allow me, then, a few words of encouragement. Despite the years-long global recession, renewable energy technologies are still developing, and renewable businesses are still growing, at an impressive pace. In the past, when economic crises or wars and political upheavals intervened, whatever scarce interest there was in renewable energy would almost instantly evaporate, leaving handfuls of inventors and engineers more or less bereft. Now, though, despite everything, renewable energy is still moving forward. Solar panels have never been more efficient, cheaper, and widespread. New, giant wind farms are popping up all the time, while the small wind sector continues to grow. Even less advanced technologies like wave power and geothermal power are making strides, despite relatively little federal investment.
In short, renewable energy is in better shape than it ever has been. While the move toward renewables may be happening too slowly for some, we can take solace in the fact that movement is happening around the world.