"We can get by without non-renewables but only if we replace them with something else."
No. Because what happens when you have a shortfall on your renewables output? It DOES happen. And no, simply building "bigger" doesn't alleviate it.
Or are we still supposed to use non-renewables like NG for all the shortfalls that happen? I thought one of the reasons to use renewables was to cut out the CO2?
"While nuclear is a good option, it's quite expensive"
Because of a hostile regulatory environment set in place by the anti-nuke crowd.
And because things like solar and wind have MASSIVE subsidies.
And no, massive solar and then more massive battery farms is NOT the answer. The amount of land use required would be astronomical.
Also, battery technology is nowhere NEAR ready for that sort of thing. Not even in 20-30 years.
Nuclear power can do what solar can, with a fraction of the land budget and is FAR more energy-dense.
The largest complete, producing solar farm on the planet currently stands at 550MW, putting out about 1.3 Terawatt/hours annually. It covers 9.5 square miles.
ONE nuclear reactor (based on 50 year old designs) has roughly DOUBLE that output.
The largest operating nuclear facility in the world (not the largest nuclear facility in the world) is in Canada, and comprises 8 reactors at a combined 6.3GW, putting out roughly 45 Terawatt/hours annually. It covers roughly 3.5 square miles.
There's also the environmental offsets of obtaining (see mining) all the constituent materials used in massive solar installations and the ecological damage they do. Moreover, there's the adjunct offsets and damage of producing all those batteries and the waste involved.
Sure, nuclear waste is unpleasant shit. But, again, it's hundreds of times more compact than the end-product waste you're talking about.
Again, renewables simply don't provide a stable power output. PERIOD. And the storage technologies that would be required to stabilize them simply aren't up to snuff yet (and if you think they are, you're delusional or you've got a racket going selling the stuff).
And why is producing methanol during a power surplus as a fuel a bad idea?
We're not going to see an all-electric passenger vehicle fleet in this country anytime in the foreseeable future.
Creating methanol binds CO2 out of the atmosphere, sequestering it while stored..
Sure, burning methanol releases it again, but it then becomes an essentially carbon-neutral propostion.
So what, exactly, is so "bad" about it?