Emerging Industry Overview: Alternative Energy

Industry Snapshot

The alternative energy industry is comprised of two main segments: renewable energy sources such as wind, solar, and hydroelectric power, and alternative vehicle fuels such as natural gas, electricity, and biodiesel. During the later years of the first decade of the twenty-first century, both of these segments were growing worldwide as countries sought sources of energy that were both environmentally friendly and economically viable.

Within the lifetimes of most who read this, the supply of world crude oil will have peaked (estimated around 2015), and natural gas liquids (NGL) will also have peaked (around 2020 to 2030), according to information presented at the September 2008 USA Conference of the Association for the Study of Peak Oil and Gas (ASPO). Discovery of new oil sources peaked 40 years earlier (in the 1960s). With a world population expected to reach nine billion by 2030 and the number of vehicles expected to double (to two billion) by 2025, the reality of a future energy crisis without alternative sources is self-evident.