We need more electricity, and SOON, according to climate leaders like Elon Musk and Bill Gates

Elon Musk recently expressed concerns at a PG&E conference about the predicted electricity shortage, which he believes could hinder the progression of AI and other energy-dependent developments. Musk anticipates that U.S. electricity consumption could triple by 2045, with a serious shortage likely as soon as 2024. His proposed solution? Speed up the time scale of energy projects.

Meanwhile, the U.S. energy industry is already struggling, with threats of rolling blackouts during demand peaks due to things like heat waves. This is testing a system already in transition, as plants continue to shift from fossil fuel plants to clean energy by retooling, etc.. It’s predicted that by 2030, the largest U.S. electric companies could be investing as much as $1.8 TRILLION into greener systems. 

Bill Gates, founder of Breakthrough Energy, agrees with Musk’s electricity concerns. At the recent EEI 2023 conference, Gates emphasized the critical need for innovation in transforming the U.S. grid and investing in advanced clean energy technologies. 

So how should we approach zero-carbon electricity? Perhaps this three-pronged approach: nuclear power for baseload , hydrogen-fueled turbines for variable load, and advanced batteries for short-duration storage. Prominent players already in these areas include Oklo, who is developing advanced fission power plants, and Mitsubishi, who is focusing on hydrogen combustion turbines. 

Increased electrification, such as the adoption of EVs, necessitates more grid-supplied zero-carbon electricity. And to properly distribute this clean energy, we need to enhance transmission systems. Lots to do in the energy transition!

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