Enough has been written about the rising levels of pollution in India and it’s disease-causing air quality. A huge contributor to this predicament of ours is our reliance on fossil fuels for energy. In use to generate electricity for our homes and our nifty little devices as well as in combustion engines to power our transportation systems, fossil fuels release tremendous amounts of carbon into the atmosphere irreparably damaging the cancer preventing ozone and infecting the air beyond any reasonable breathable limit.
The one fact you might not be aware of is that the solution to our predicament has been right there hanging above us in the sky this whole time in the form of free, unlimited and most importantly ‘clean’ solar energy. Even amongst those who are aware of the technology behind ‘solar energy’ and how it works more often do not know how much surface space it requires to make life with it completely sustainable. Most assume it must require a mind-bogglingly huge area and that therefore must make the implementation impractical.
When Elon Musk took the stage on the 30th of April at the event named “The Missing Piece”, that is exactly the question he chose to focus Tesla’s eccentric spotlight on. This of course lead to nothing less than absolute pandemonium all over the world as a whole bunch of frenzied mathematicians fell all over themselves trying to scurry over to their calculators as quickly as possible to try and fact check the mad young billionaire’s claims.
For those of you who don’t know, Elon Musk is the co-founder of PayPal – the electronic payment company that was acquired by eBay for $1.5 billion, the founder of SpaceX – the commercial space exploration company that recently won a contract from NASA to supply the ISS and hopes to someday soon put tourists on Mars, and the CEO of Tesla Motors – the company currently revolutionising the automobile industry with it’s silent electric cars, self-driving features and advanced passenger protective functions.
Musk dreams up as many as 6 impossible ideas before breakfast each day and has made ‘changing the world’ his full-time occupation. So when one of the wealthiest young inventive geniuses of our time takes the stage and claim he has yet another idea that could completely change how we view life, everybody listens!
What Musk claimed, standing next to a rather small blue square on a rather massive map of the USA, was that the surface area of solar panels required to generate enough power to meet the demands of the entire country would form a square with a side only a 100 miles long.
But the Sun doesn’t shine upon the earth 24 hours a day and as surely as the Earth circles the Sun, night must follow day. This was the problem Tesla chose to solve via the release of their new product the ‘Powerwall’ transitioning them completely from an automobile company into a battery company. Musk has always said that Tesla was in the battery business, more than half the cost of the car is its battery essentially making the car just a delivery system for its core product. The Powerwall is the cheapest Li-ion home battery available in the market and aims to help people get off the grid by storing solar energy in the day so that the energy can be used to power your house when the sun goes down.
Now according to the World Bank, the USA used 3741 billion kWh last year. India by comparison (ranking as the 5th biggest consumer of energy in the world) managed to consume 600 billion kWh. The maths from here onwards get really simple: an area of 1667 miles square with a side of only 41 miles (or 66 kilometers) is all that is required to take India off grid and provide everybody with endless, consistent and clean energy. An area that small could be easily found anywhere in a barren state or the Rann of Kutch or one of the many random desert areas in our country.
And here is a map :
This is what we need, this is what the world needs, I don’t know why the ‘powers that be’ don’t see it but this could literally put India light years ahead of where we are right now and it would secure not only our future but also our present power and security needs.
Can somebody please elect Musk the president of India?