Our planets climate is changing, and this is due primarily to humans burning fossil fuels for energy. The world’s scientists are virtually unanimous in the agreement of the problem and its’ cause, and the world’s political leaders also virtually unanimous in their agreement about the problem and what needs to be done to fix it. The Paris climate agreement (to radically reduce the use of fossil fuels over the medium term) is a major achievement for all countries in the world, although unfortunately the president of United States has decided to pull out of this agreement.
While this might at first glance appear to be disastrous for the planet’s climate, in actual fact anything that the United States president does or doesn’t do it is likely to be irrelevant in the long term. The reason for this is the rapid and exponential advance of new technology that will radically reduce the world’s use of fossil fuels in the very short term. The exponential decrease in the cost of solar power means that coal and gas power plants are today largely uneconomic to build and even to run. Electric vehicle technology using batteries is now at a price point that makes it more attractive for buyers than vehicles based on internal combustion engines.
More importantly, autonomous driving technology when combined with the electric vehicles means that transport as a service will be viable within 1 to 2 years. The cost per kilometre for this emerging service will be only 10% to 20% over the cost of the equivalent Uber service, and only 20% to 50% of the cost of owning a vehicle.
The world’s internal combustion engine based vehicle manufacturing business is about to be drastically disrupted, and expert predictions are there no internal combustion engine cars will be sold after 2030. By this time all of the worlds coal fired power plants will be being retired, and the worlds oil output will it have dropped by at least 30%, leaving most of the worlds oil, gas and coal supplies stranded underground.
This massive reduction in the use of fossil fuels will cause a huge step change in the amount of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere, and will result in the most optimistic goals of the Paris climate agreement being achieved.