Global environmental challenges
Robert Kennedy Jr: solar and natural gas belong together
The solar power sector and the natural gas industry need to build an alliance to get more government support and take over the energy sector from incumbents like Big Oil and King Coal, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. said on Wednesday.
The environmentalist spoke at the Solar Power International Conference being held in Anaheim, California, this week.
“The alliance is just forming,” Kennedy told reporters after his remarks. He added that the natural gas industry has been “hiding under oil and they think Big Oil is going to take care of them. But they’re realizing Big Oil is never going to let them make a profit” and that companies like Chesapeake are realizing “that their future is with the environmental community and the renewable community.”
He said the team-up also makes sense because power from natural gas can help balance out solar and wind-generated electricity on the grid, eliminating the problem of inconsistency on sunny days, for instance.
Kennedy argued that the solar power industry needs to alert the U.S. government that the country is in an “arms race with the Chinese.”
“It’s not an arms race over tanks and planes. It’s an arms race over who’s going to build solar panels and who’s going to build them the most efficient. We’ve got to start treating this as an arms race,” Kennedy said.
He added that the Chinese have outspent the U.S. government in the renewable sector and that “they know that this is the future and they want to put us out of business. They are going to put a lot of us out of business, a lot of solar panel makers out of business because they’re going to flood the market with their paneling.”
Reporting and writing by Laura Isensee