(OILPRICE) — Renewable energy sources suffer from three major problems.
The first is the effective hammerlock monopoly that traditional hydrocarbon and coal industries have in many countries.
The second is the fact that wind and solar power have yet to break even with kilowatt costs for electricity generated by traditional power sources, though the gap is closing fast.
Third and perhaps most significant is the fact that renewables have yet to bridge the 24/7 reliability gap – the wind doesn’t always blow, the sun goes down – at which point most utilities fall back on – you guessed it – traditional fossil fuel plants to make up the difference.
Finding a way to bridge the 24/7 reliability gap has accordingly become the holy grail of renewable energy researchers and proponents. But now, possibly, Canadian researchers have cut the renewable energy Gordian knot.