Alternative energy is a term that is bandied about in the media. So much so that it might have lost some of its impact. When discussing investments, alternative energy stocks can mean different things to different people, some of which may agree with the general public’s perception of it, while other ideas may not seem so alternative anymore.
The term alternative energy really covers a broad spectrum. For instance, solar energy is considered alternative. Wind power is considered alternative. Electric cars are not a source of alternative energy but are a product of alternative energy research. Fossil fuels are definitely not alternative energy, unless you consider using natural gas as a replacement fuel for automobiles as alternative.
A few years back there was big push around the world for ethanol, which is a corn-based energy source, and was considered alternative. Ethanol proved to be something less than a successful alternative to fossil fuels like oil, but it did cause a massive spike in corn prices worldwide, which enriched more than a few investors.
Alternative Energy Stocks: Past and Future
You see, 50 or 60 years ago there was a scientist, M. King Hubbert, who proposed that the planet was fast approaching the point when the supply of oil would peak. And after it peaked the oil supply would then rapidly decline until the world was eventually faced with a vast shortage of oil. That shortage was supposed to cause all kinds of problems, from famines to war, complicating and potentially lowering the standard life on planet earth.
Mr. Hubbert’s theory, along with concerns about global warming, helped advance the pursuit of alternative energies. Today, there are plenty of people who no longer believe in Peak Oil, and there are some that question global warming, but nonetheless the pursuit of alternative energy continues. Scientists and entrepreneurs alike will continue to try to develop economically viable alternative energy, synonymously referred to at times as “clean energy” in contrast to the “dirty” burning of fossil fuels.
And investors will always be on the lookout for the next breakthrough alternative energy stocks, hoping to cash in on an innovative company or ride the wave of a commodity boom that delivers massive trading profits. It has happened before, and it will again, but there has yet to be developed a truly viable replacement for fossil fuels. In the meantime, the pursuit for valuable alternative energy stocks, and the profit that may come with it, continues.
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