...instead of trying to make solar perform exactly like fossil fuel power generation.
Let's say the storage problem is never solved (unlikely, it seems to me) and that the stored power is simply much more expensive than power generated when the sun shines (that is, in fact, the worst case -- even now, its not that we can't store the energy, but simply that it costs more to do so. We can already store as much energy as we wish; we simply have to pay for the energy losses due to the inefficiencies inherent in the process).
What if designers built houses that factored in a two tier energy cost structure from the ground up. Couldn't your refrigerator, for example, be designed to fill a compressed gas cylinder when energy was cheap, and release it during the night when energy was expensive? If we use energy for heating, couldn't we charge a heat sink with warmth (or cold, for that matter) when energy was cheap, and utilize it when power was expensive?
What if we started looking at the whole way we use energy and asked ourselves whether there weren't, in fact, some very obvious solutions which merely require being willing to look at the problem differently.
The biggest impediment to solar is simply people's inherent conservatism, and reluctance to changing. Yes, those horseless carriages do in fact make noise, and belch smoke. But they also make it possible to go on vacation a thousand miles from where you live.
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