This YouTube clip of a fascinating presentation by academic and energy entrepreneur Tony Seba called “Clean disruption – why energy & transportation will be obsolete by 2030”, is an engaging and thought provoking glimpse into the not very distant future of battery storage and autonomous vehicles that will almost certainly be genuinely disruptive and therefor transformative for our day to day lives.
Saba references the well-known Moores Law to put forward a case that ongoing technological improvements will see energy costs converge towards zero – music to the ears of battered Australian power consumers. In a cost reduction battle between technology (renewable energy sources, particularly solar PV and battery storage) and commodities, it’s blindingly obvious who’s going to win.
He also dissects the arguments about electric and autonomous vehicles to analyse if they can be considered truly disruptive. With the costs of EV production falling in line with the costs of energy storage, plus the almost zero marginal costs that come from running a car with 18 moving parts vs. more than 2,000, he sees a one way battle. And autonomous cars will liberate people from owning an asset that typically has more than 90% downtime, saving an estimated $11,000 a year. Altogether disruptive enough that he forecasts all new cars will be electric by 2025.