Is the popularity of the Bloom box a good thing for renewable energy?



  1. 0 Votes

    The Bloom Box is still largely unused (due to it’s high pricetag, ~$750,000), despite claims by Bloom that its price will fall to $2,000-3,000 within the decade.  If Bloom can reach that pricetag, and Bloom Boxes take hold, it could be a major setback for renewable energy.

    The reason for that is Bloom’s fuel cells run on fuel.  They claim the boxes can run on biofuel, but biofuel presents its own set of issues, including deforestation and world hunger, especially if the demand for it were from nearly every household and business worldwide — as in Bloom’s vision of the future.  If not biofuel, the Bloom Box will run on Natural Gas, Propane, or Gasoline, which are all fossil fuels and in dwindling supply.  Granted, its efficiency will be much higher than conventional fuel combustion, but if it “replaces the grid”, another goal of Bloom, then when fuel supplies inevitably dry up and we once again need renewable energy, the problems facing us could be even worse than they are now.

    That is not to say that I think the Bloom Box is the devil incarnate.  It is cleaner and far more efficient than the fossil fuel combustion that currently powers the majority of our grid, and it may also be possible to use electrolysis to isolate hydrogen from water for use as fuel in the Box.  However instead of being an energy savior or holy grail like many articles and blogs have claimed, it might buy us some time, but it could also be a major reason to procrastinate in finding real solutions to our energy problems.

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