"Integral Fast Reactors CAN WILL Power the Planet"

We won...

The official results for the MIT Climate CoLab contests were announced last Friday. Thanks to the support of people from around the world, our proposal envisioning a path to an energy-abundant future was far and away the top vote-getter, garnering 665 votes.Support came from North America, China, South Korea, Sweden, Britain, Australia, Japan and beyond. Tom Blees, the president of SCGI, will travel to MIT in November to present his proposal at the Climate CoLab conference.

The emphasis of this collaborative competition was to elicit solutions to the problem of climate change. Nearly all of the proposals presented some version of energy efficiency. While this is certainly a laudable goal, the demographic and climate realities we’re looking at in the 21st century call into question whether a future of constrained energy use is even possible. Can we provide all the energy for nine or ten billion people that are predicted to be on the planet in 2050 without a massive increase in primary energy supply, no matter how efficiently we manage to use it? Aside from the basic challenge of providing fresh water for billions of people, the fact that billions who now live in relative energy poverty wish to progress to a standard of living comparable to that enjoyed by inhabitants of the so-called developed nations presents an epic energy challenge.

Energy efficiency, for all its benefits, does not produce energy. Everything points to a future that will absolutely require a greatly increased supply of energy, and its sources will have to be both economical and environmentally benign.

The SCGI proposal is conspicuous in the field of CoLab entries as the one that can meet such goals and create an energy-abundant future for the entire planet. Every nation’s people can have a realistic opportunity to elevate their standard of living. Certainly energy efficiency will help if only because fewer power plants will have to be built. But we needn’t worry about not having enough energy for all humanity’s needs, nor about how supplying that energy will impact the environment.

I’d like to personally thank all those who voted to support the IFR proposal, and the many who mobilized friends, colleagues and even strangers in calling attention to the contest and to the future that it envisions. Together we are creating the world our children and grandchildren will inherit. We have to get this right.

Tom Blees
President, The Science Council for Global Initiatives

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