Clean Energy Future to be Spelled Out Tonight at EPIcenter


San Antonio's innovative Epicenter energy incubator tonight opens its mission of exploring new energy with a presentation by Dr. Lynn Abramson, President of the Clean Energy Business Network, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

The goal of the EPIcenter, which is a project of CPS Energy, is to keep Texas in the forefront of the world's energy evolution for the next century, just as Texas has been the energy leader from Spindletop in 1900 through the introduction of fracking in the last decade.

Dr. Abramson, who is on EPIcenter's board of directors, tells News Radio 1200 WOAI that Clean Energy, which generally encompasses wind, solar, and geothermal, is being rolled out in a different was as traditional energy, which is generally generated by massive power plants and distributed through a citywide grid.

She says clean energy is far more likely to be generated on-site, and distributed one home or one neighborhood at a time.

"The costs are coming down, and we are seeing it becoming increasingly affordable for homeowner to place solar on their homes," she said.

She says the fall in costs, which has been predicted for some time, is reaching the point where solar and wind are, in some cases, even cheaper than traditional, grid-delivered energy.

She points to advances being made in electric cars.

"Just in the year 2017, we have a drop of one quarter in the cost of the lithium-ion batteries, which power electric vehicles," she said.Abramson said it is important to dispel several myths surrounding green energy.

First of all, she says sources like wind and solar will not 'replace' traditional fossil fuels, but wil work together with clear burning natural gas to enhance the energy grid.

"You are going to really be able to harness all of these energy sources in concert, and they will really be complimentary."

She cites the fact that natural gas can be used to supply power when the sun is not shining and the wind is not blowing for long periods of time.

Another myth is caused by the fact that clean energy has gotten tangled up in the political debate over climate change.  She says regardless of what side you support in the divisive battle over 'global warming,' you can agree that the introduction of a new, and increasingly reliable energy source, with the added benefit of being clean to use, is an advantage.

She says clean energy today is in the place where the Internet was in the 1990, with companies poised to grow rapidly, and much of the energy investment in the coming years will be geared toward clean energy, bringing down its cost even further, and developing batteries and other storage systems.

She says today in the U.S., there are 3,000+ business leaders of small- to medium-size companies providing technologies and services in energy efficiency, renewable energy, natural gas, or other advanced energy and transportation sectors.


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