Renewable energy vs fossil fuels? Wrong choice, says John Dorr

As Russia’s war in Ukraine has led to a surge in oil prices, energy shortages in Europe and fears that the natural gas situation will worsen, there is a growing backlash against renewables and the idea that the world is ready to go without fossil fuels.

According to John Dorr, chairman of venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins, the world needs to get rid of the idea that it’s either one or the other.

“It’s time to double down on renewable, free energy that isn’t controlled by oil dictators,” Dorr told CNBC correspondent Andrew Ross Sorkin at the Aspen Ideas Festival on Monday. “Now we are funding both sides of this war.”

As a result of the current geopolitical situation, society must realize the need for more sources of energy, and especially the need for more sources of clean energy. “This is the wrong choice. We have to do both,” Doerr said.

He refuted the claim that developing renewable energy projects takes too long to deal with the world as it is today. “In 18 months, you can deploy new solar power at scale. You can’t build a new LNG plant in the same amount of time,” Doerr said.

He added: “In [International Energy Agency] says we don’t need to drill more hydrocarbons to meet market demand. We have enough reserves. Develop those.”

The abundance of solar and wind energy in Egypt “will enable the production of renewable energy at a very competitive price, and will also serve as a key driver for the production of green hydrogen.”

Ute Grabowski | Photo library | Getty Images

Dorr, an early investor in renewable energy, remains steadfast in his belief that “we are in the midst of an epic transition from a fossil fuel economy to a clean energy economy. its influence… This is the best investment opportunity we’ve ever had, but the road will be bumpy.”

AT separate interview At the Aspen Ideas Festival, Carlyle Group co-chairman and billionaire investor David Ruberstein told CNBC: “Of course everyone wants more clean energy, but it’s not easy to achieve. What the Russian-Ukrainian war has taught us is that the world is still very dependent on carbon energy, and right now the world is struggling to get more carbon energy.” He added: “The world is realizing that you can’t go carbon neutral overnight, it will take some time.”

Dörr said the fastest change that can be made in the energy transition is not to create new renewable technologies or produce more hydrocarbons, but to reduce methane leaks, waste and methane flaring. He said it was “a productive hydrocarbon, but we’re just tossing it up in the air like it’s just a free and open sewer.”

“like Google Earth, sort of a map where you can track carbon emissions and focus on methane as the first and most potent gas.”

Disclosure: NBCUniversal News Group is the media partner of the Aspen Ideas Festival.