By Dr. Robert Holcomb MD, Ph.D., Inventor of the Holcomb Energy System
The window of opportunity to avoid the most devastating impacts of climate breakdown is fast closing. A landmark report from the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was published last week delivering the most dire warnings yet regarding the impacts of climate change on ecosystems, biodiversity, and human communities on global and regional levels.
The culmination of more than seven years of research, the UN report draws on thousands of research studies from climate scientists around the globe. Their message: the time remaining to secure a liveable future for humans and our world is running out. The effects of climate change will be more destructive than previously predicted and climate catastrophe is already inevitable for the most vulnerable areas around the globe.
However, all hope is not yet lost. In the face of a global pandemic, humanity has shown that we possess the capability for mass cooperation. Global collective action is again required to address the greatest existential threat that has ever confronted humankind — the climate crisis. Technology got us into this terrifying predicament but it can also play an outsized role in getting us out of it. Although renewables like wind and solar will continue to be important, their limitations are all too apparent. Only new technological innovation will save us and right the pollution, equity and climate wrongs of past decades. This will be achieved by eliminating carbon emissions from the energy sector and making it more profitable to be clean than dirty.
Small contribution, worst impact
It is a perverse fact that those living in emerging economies — who have emitted the least carbon emissions in comparison with wealthier nations — are set to suffer the worst impacts of the climate crisis and at the fastest rate. In fact, highly vulnerable populations already face extreme weather hazards and climate-induced humanitarian crises, such as food insecurity, malnutrition and mass migration wrought by droughts and floods.
Although these jurisdictions are already bearing the brunt, no country is off the hook. The IPCC report makes clear that every corner on earth will be affected, with no inhabited region escaping dire impacts from rising temperatures and increasingly extreme weather. Around half the global population — between 3.3 billion and 3.6 billion people–live in areas “highly vulnerable” to climate change.
The difference is that these vulnerable areas don’t have the luxury of adapting to the effects of climate change, but rather face an existential threat. Small islands will be among those worst affected and the report’s projected impacts would be cataclysmic, with temperature rise of more than 1.5C engendering irreversible changes in sea levels.
Holistic and immediate response required
For too long we have buried our heads in the sand concerning the scale of the climate challenge we face. We need a holistic approach that, for example, incorporates biodiversity action, the preservation of food and freshwater supplies and the implementation of advanced warning systems for coastal and island cities. While technology doesn’t offer a silver bullet solution to all of our problems, through the reimagining and rapid implementation of how we produce and consume energy, we can tackle the greatest contributor to our worsening situation by rapidly eliminating carbon emissions from the energy sector.
In this context, I have spent the past 13 years intensely researching, developing and refining an entirely new means of clean energy production. The Holcomb Energy System (HES) is a transformational technology that can help to address some of the world’s most critical energy issues, such as rampant carbon emissions, rising global demand for energy, inequities to access, soaring energy costs, a bottleneck supply of the world’s energy resources, our continued reliance on fossil fuels, and associated damage to our environment.
This has been achieved through a dramatic redesign of the traditional electrical generator. Although it is the foundation of our modern world, the generator has not significantly improved in efficiency since its creation. By harnessing the electron spin in the iron atom — the material from which the generator is largely constructed — we are able to create a self-sustaining means of producing electricity at point-of use without the need for an outside fuel source. This scalable technology has applications everywhere energy is used — in homes, commercial buildings, transportation, consumer electronics, and on or off the electrical grid.
The HES produces energy right where it’s needed, day or night, with no energy storage necessary. It utilizes the abundant resource of iron, the key ingredient of electrical steel, and is far more affordable than any form of electricity available today, even fossil fuels. Because the HES has no moving parts, it runs totally silent, producing no heat and requiring virtually no maintenance.
While there is much to be concerned about given the severity of the findings from the IPCC, I am optimistic about a liveable and green future on planet earth. Combining novel biodiversity solutions, an approach that prioritizes the safety of those in the most climate vulnerable regions, and technological innovation to completely nullify energy sector emissions, there is still hope for us to turn the tide in the fight for our beautiful planet.