The methanol economy is an idea that was promoted by the late Nobel-prize-winning chemist George Olah since the 1990s. The idea is to replace fossil fuels with methanol for energy storage, ground transportation fuel, and raw material for hydrocarbon-based products. Methanol is the simplest alcohol and can be produced from a wide variety of sources ranging from fossil fuels to agricultural products to just carbon dioxide. Methanol can be used directly as a fuel or it can be reformed into hydrogen, which can then itself be used as a fuel.
The Netherlands – the country long associated with picturesque windmills – is now operating 100% of its electric trains with wind energy.
Colleges and universities across the country are increasingly deploying solar arrays and other types of renewable energy. Many have set goals to become carbon neutral.