Governments are looking to investors for help to reach their COP21 goals, but they should look to their citizens and voters, and help them to become consumers that buy sustainable products, massively.
Consumers buy sustainable products, because of the advantage they bring. Like low cost power, when a country regulations allow consumers to get that benefit.
Consumers will drive the transition to a low-carbon economy, because they have a future, their children.
Solar panels are already an example of a consumer product that brings benefit, when consumers buy it.
But in many countries, also a part of a shared wind farm, will become a very popular consumer product.
These are examples of mass consumer products, to be, because they work automatically, once bought and installed. And because consumers have the cheapest money to buy them. Very interest rates on savings, in many parts of the world, makes buying their own power generation more advantageous than money in the bank. Investors money is much more expensive, and banks have higher interest rates for loans than they give for savings accounts.
The market forces and competition on this new consumer market, will make the transition to a low-carbon economy efficient, provided that governments review and change their regulations, to allow consumers to buy on the market for sustainable products.
And to do this, is in the interest of these governments too. Most consumers want to do something to save their world from the climate problem. So lets ask governments to help their citizens to do that. Most consumers are voters too.
Therefore, investors in wind and solar farms should make the paradigm shift
Investors that build wind farms today, should sell them to consumers as mass consumer product, in stead of operating them for a profit. This is a new business model that engages consumers money and allows investors to build wind farms faster.
And both consumers and investors should ask governments to review local regulations, to help consumers to get the benefits of the sustainable products they buy.
One of these regulations is that the grid, should become a shared resource, that allow consumers to use their power at home, while it is generated in a shared wind or solar farm, somewhere on the grind.
The power of the consumer market will make for a low cost transition to a low-carbon economy.
It should also be possible, to buy and sell renewable generation power like parts of a shared wind or solar farm, on a consumer market, because over time, families will need more power, eg, when they buy a electric car.
This electric car is also an example of a low-carbon product. Again, governments can help grow the low-carbon economy with the standard ways governments have to facilitate this market. EG, give consumers a chance to generate their own power, and have it at cost price. A on land wind farm generates low-carbon power for 2 to 3 cents (Dollar, EUR), when consumers own the wind farm. Driving a EV with your own power costs about 0,5 to 1 cent per km. And todays fuel cars cost about 10 cents per km. So what government regulation stops consumers to drive a EV with their own power.
Its this transparency of markets, that makes finding the required changes to a low-carbon economy easy. For governments too.
When we have the courage to make the policy changes we find necessary for a low-carbon economy. Lets start today.
This blog is my entry in the Masdar’s 2016 Engage Blogging Contest: The Transition to a Low-Carbon Economy by 2030