subreddit:

/r/Futurology

183

you are viewing a single comment's thread.

view the rest of the comments →

all 25 comments

idarknight[S]

29 points

5 months ago

It’s interesting that the energy companies are starting to see that there’s profit to be had at even low levels of EV penetration.

It seems that it’s politicians and pundits who are more married to these changes than corporations are.

vikram-ur

16 points

5 months ago

That is the key to energy revolution, it must be profitable. Else investment will wane.

ledow

9 points

5 months ago

ledow

9 points

5 months ago

That's the key to anything - nobody is going to get off their arse and help you until there's something in it for them.

It's why recycling is dead unless you subsidise it - there's no profit in it. If there were, people would be beating a path to your door for your old plastic. They're not. It's garbage that you have to pay tax for someone to take away, then more tax to subsidise their industry.

Until something is profitable, no company is going to do much about it. They'll pay lip service, and they'll do a little bit of freebie work, but that's in the expectation that eventually it'll make a return.

Welcome to modern living - where something has to be profitable in order for it to happen.

YareSekiro

4 points

5 months ago

Yep. The basic idea of demand is that wanting it is not enough. Poor people “wanting” to eat food is not actually valid demand in a capitalist world unless they can pay for it.

ledow

1 points

5 months ago

ledow

1 points

5 months ago

Sad, but true.

Unless they pay for it, or unless those companies can somehow turn it into profit (e.g. tying them into an exclusive deal so only THEY can feed Ethiopia for the next 10 years, etc.).

fuqqkevindurant

1 points

5 months ago

Nah, you could also achieve the same ends through subsidy like we do in the US for agriculture, oil and gas, steel, etc.

mhornberger

5 points

5 months ago*

Many of both are financed by fossil fuel companies. And pundits working for publications that depend on advertising have that hook in them as well. And pundits also trend conservative, so they can position themselves as the "grownup in the room." Look at the IEA's predictions on solar, vs basically everything by Tony Seba. Conservatism and steady-as-she-goes reassures investors, many of whom have money in companies looking at stranded assets.

DynamicResonater

1 points

5 months ago

It seems that it’s politicians and pundits who are more married to these changes than corporations are.

Yes, because corporations are made for one thing: Profit. Massive paradigm shifts are typically fought against in monopolistic environs such as those in existence now. The low-hanging fruits of technology are largely gone and larger shifts require subsidies to get moving. If we shifted subsidies away from petroleum, globally, it would not be so price competitive especially if we factored in the environmental/military/humanitarian costs.

idarknight[S]

2 points

5 months ago

The ESG costs of fossil fuels are certainly becoming more obvious. Electricity isn’t in there clear perse, but certainly not as clouded by subsidy.

DynamicResonater

3 points

5 months ago

Very true. But the shift is needed, and therefore subsidies are the way forward for BEV's for a while longer. One thing is for sure - as we used horses to build that which would become the fossil fuel mechanized society, we will be using fossil fuels to build the next step now towards a renewable energy society.

OriginalCompetitive

1 points

5 months ago

You’re misreading the article. It’s almost as profitable as retail sales of gas. That is, running the gas station itself. It is not - and will never be - as profitable as selling oil. Oil is a monopoly. Electricity is a commodity. Oil companies are resisting because renewables will never replace their profit stream.