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Riled Up is a journal of science, the environment, exploration, new technology, and related commentary.  Contributors include scientists, explorers, engineers, and others who provide perspectives and context not typically offered in general news circulation.  For interested readers, additional resources are included.

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Catalyzing Breakthroughs

Catalyzing Breakthroughs



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While some people embrace the past, software pioneer and philanthropist, Bill Gates, has a far more future-oriented vision: to transform energy technologies for a carbonless future.

While renewable energy still provides only a limited percentage of current energy consumed, it is growing fast. Gates has created and funded Breakthrough Energy as a $1 billion effort to develop renewably energy. His green energy initiative will: "finance emerging energy breakthroughs to deliver affordable and reliable energy with the goal of reducing global greenhouse gas emissions to near-zero."

In announcing the plan Gates continued: "The Breakthrough Energy Coalition is a group of entrepreneurs, business leaders, and institutional investors who have committed to help bring promising new zero-emissions energy technologies to market. We are investing capital and working with over 20 countries to significantly increase their research investments that could lead to breakthrough innovations."

Breakthrough Energy Ventures (BEV) was created by: "a group of investors brought together in a new fund that is patient, flexible, and committed to the Coalition's principles, have a long-term horizon, and a tolerance and understanding of the risks required to transform energy markets."

This approach is not unlike the strategy used by the Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) which was responsible for technlogical breakthroughs including GPS, drones, and the internet. Major breakthroughs will similarly be required in: renewable energy generation, storage, and distribution; green hydrogen for powering vehicles; and CO2 capture. Each research effort will be catalyzed with funds and expertise to accomplish these goals as Gates explains:

Bill Gates made his 20th Century reputation showing practical uses for software. We should wish him success in this renewable energy initiative in the 21st. Its success will benefit the environment, economies worldwide, and produce enormous amounts of energy, jobs, and wealth. WHB

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