Russell Gold, Senior Reporter for the Wall Street Journal and author of The Boom, is taking a deep dive on what it will take for renewable energy to grow in the U.S. in his newest book, Superpower–One Man’s Quest to Transform American Energy. Gold has become a key player in chronicling the modern energy industry and its growth with decades of experience in covering these energy entrepreneurs.
While another important energy writer, Dan Yergin, told the story of the heritage fossil industry, Gold has focused on the modern entrepreneurial dreamers in both the oil and gas industry as well as the renewable sector in the U.S. The story of these folks, whether it is the independent oil and gas producers who created the American oil shale boom highlighted in Boom, or the renewable energy entrepreneurs, the subject of this book, are the real visionary’s whose ideas change the world.
Gold’s latest book tells the inside story of an ambitious and groundbreaking project to build a giant renewable energy transmission highway and what the developers must confront in the not-in-my back yard world where there is intense energy on energy source competition, as the developers confront dozens of setbacks and hurdles. It tells the story of Clean Line Energy and its founder, Michael Skelly, who conceived the idea for a new power grid that would allow wind and solar where it is abundant to light up homes thousands of miles away, from the Great Plains to Atlanta.
I had an opportunity to get to know Michael in his early days as he built windfarms in Oklahoma while I was Chairman of the Oklahoma Corporation Commission as well as the CEO of the American Wind Energy Association as he began his journey to build his direct current long-line transmission, which was chronicled in the book. Pages 88 – 90 dives into my brief encounter with Michael’s organization back in Oklahoma – before my work with the American Wind Energy Association.
It is a must-read for anyone interested in the future of energy. It is available for order on Amazon (including Audible.com which I regularly use) and all the usual spots.