The world is poised on the brink of a "cheap gas" era that may undermine the viability of renewable energy options. Not gas as in gasoline but as in natural gas, shale gas released by fracking.
"More gas [power plants] than wind and solar will be built [in the 10 to 20 years]," said Steve Bolze, chief executive of General Electric's power and water division, which makes gas-fired turbines. "Gas is a good alternative to being 100% renewable."
...The International Energy Agency has predicted that if the anticipated "dash for gas " goes ahead, the world will be far adrift of its greenhouse gas emissions targets. Laszlo Varro, head of gas, coal and power markets at the IEA, said: "We have said repeatedly that on our current trajectory we will miss these targets ."
The gas industry is banking on a "cleaner than coal" argument to win over government resistance - if there is any. This is another enormous hurdle in the path of alternative energy initiatives. It reinforces the necessity of strict carbon taxes - the very idea embodied in Stephane Dion's "Green Shift" proposal - to curb fossil fuel consumption. Of course our new leader of the official opposition was more than happy to trash Dion over carbon taxes and with Layton in the lap of a Petro-Pol prime minister, Canada's not going anywhere on carbon emissions.