Don’t Lock Out The Next Generation Of Green Tech

Photo by Orjan F. Ellingvag/Corbis via Getty Images

Article by Christopher Koopman and Brian Isomf, via The Hill

From modularized nuclear reactors to renewable natural gas systems to facilities that convert energy from ocean waves into electricity, the potential for clean technology to reshape our energy sector is massive. And yet many of these technologies are struggling for a foothold in the market. While wind and solar may be today’s innovative approach, it may not be the case forever.

Here’s the problem: Current policies created to help today’s green tech threaten to slow down the next generation of clean energy technology.

Established green tech receives a tremendous amount of support. According to a 2016 report from the U.S. Energy Information Agency, between 18 and 41 percent of all energy subsidies during the years measured went to wind and solar (for context, natural gas and petroleum received between 5 and 10 percent). In addition, energy policies (such as net metering) and energy mandates (such as renewable portfolio standards) are driving up demand for existing technologies. And many states have taken these steps even further. California, for example, will soon require solar panels to be placed on every new home built in the state after 2020.

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