The business-oriented Financial Times has declared a winner in the battle between fossil and renewable energy. And “Big Oil won’t be happy,” ThinkProgress reports, in a review by veteran energy analyst Joe Romm.
“Fossil fuels have lost,” said Eddie O’Connor, CEO of Irish wind farm developer Mainstream Renewable Power. “The rest of the world just doesn’t know it yet.”
It’s a story that wouldn’t have made its way into the Murdoch-controlled Wall Street Journal or the New York Times, Romm writes. “The business community, though, is starting to see the writing on the wall, especially in Europe,” where Shell CEO Ben van Beurden recently acknowledged the low-carbon economy as an “unstoppable” necessity that “must be embraced” if fossil companies are to survive.
“The Financial Times article, in fact, begins with an anecdote of a company that developed a better turbocharger for gas-powered cars,” Romm notes. “After getting some interest from big car companies last year, in January, ‘Suddenly, no one wanted new products for cars running on fossil fuels.’ Instead, car companies were putting their limited R&D budgets into electric cars, a seismic shift at unprecedented speed.”
The article cites plummeting battery costs as one of the factors that make renewable energy’s primacy unstoppable, and massive capacity increases—a total of 14 megafactories around the world, including nine in China—as the driver behind affordable batteries.
“Investors say important trends like this are obscured in countries where the existence of climate change is still so widely contested that the scale of the energy transition is underestimated,” writes FT environment correspondent Pilita Clark. But Romm takes Clark’s report as one indication that “traditional energy companies and mainstream financial publications are finally waking up to the new reality.”