If all goes as planned, the US will eliminate all greenhouse gas emissions from its electricity sector by 2035 – an ambitious goal set by President-elect Joe Biden, relying in large part on a sharp increase in wind and solar energy generation. That plan may soon get a boost from nuclear fusion, a powerful technology that until recently had seemed far out of reach. Researchers developing a nuclear fusion reactor that can generate more energy than it consumes have shown in a series of recent papers that their design should work, restoring optimism that this clean, limitless power source will help mitigate the climate crisis. While the new reactor still remains in early development, scientists hope it will be able to start producing electricity by the end of the decade. Martin Greenwald, one of the project’s senior scientists, said a key motivation for the ambitious timeline is meeting energy requirements in a warming world. “Fusion seems like one of the possible solutions to get ourselves out of our impending climate disaster,” he said.
Guardian 28th Dec 2020 read more »