Elon Musk is the billionaire CEO of Tesla and the visionary behind Space X, which is utilizing private funds to bridge the gaps left when many governments abandoned their space exploration programs due to budget concerns. Musk is a very vocal proponent for green energy technologies, and is utilizing Tesla in a multi-pronged attack on the fossil fuel industry, creating technologies that would be hindered or even eliminated if they were dependent upon public funding for support. Musk has proven time and time again that the problem isn’t the lack of technology or desire to create better systems with less environmental impact, instead placing the blame squarely on the fossil fuel industry itself and its desire to maintain control through suppression of technological advancements. Essentially, Musk’s message is that the oil and coal industries maintain their stranglehold on energy production through governmental intervention and lobbying, keeping their own industries profitable by eliminating any competitive technology. Through his own private investment, Musk is proving that green energy production is able to replace the fossil fuel industries.
A new National Geographic documentary titled “Before the Flood” features an interview with Musk where he proposes a “global shift toward a more localized clean energy system of solar panels and batteries.” He goes on to propose carbon taxing as well as working against the limitations of what individuals can do to stand up to the suppression tactics of the fossil fuel industry, discussing the ways that individuals can influence each other in order to advance the understanding of technologies we already have at hand. Musk’s message is one of education triumphing over suppression of knowledge.
One aspect of the situation that Musk does not address is the ability to utilize technological advancements in order to make that global push towards localized energy production an economic decision. The only real push-back towards the green energy production industries is economic, that people are unwilling to pay more for electricity to be generated one way over another, even if one of the choices is obviously better for the environment. The public will always choose the cheaper method of production, and if they were made aware that there is a possibility that the fossil fuel industry itself is hindering technological advancements that could ultimately save them money on their power bills, they very well might feel differently.
A good example of this situation is the development of an advanced generation of industrial surge protection devices by Raycap that do not need resetting or replacement in between surge events. This technological advancement allows wind turbines and solar farms that have been outfitted with devices from Raycap to absorb the damage caused by lightning strikes to panels and wind turbines, and remain online and productive. One of the major setbacks for green energy production occurs when the systems are taken offline by lightning strikes during potential production periods. This common occurrence limits the amount of electricity that can be produced during any period using green resources by taking the system offline, and any method of extending that production period will drive down production costs. Raycap’s technology allows for wind and solar facilities to stay online even after a strike, continually producing power for the maximum periods of time that the fuel source is available, and therefore creating available supplies that can be sold to consumers for lower prices. Technology is available to make green energy more affordable than fossil fuel energy, and people like Elon Musk are pushing the public to begin calling for it. Raycap agrees.