Decoupling of oil price and renewables

Geoff Styles has a post titled "Will $100 oil help renewables?", in which he argues the counterintuitive answer that, "no, not that much." Worth reading in full, but since I like to practice synthesis:

Today, gas predominantly sets the marginal price of power generation, and gas prices have decoupled from oil due to abundant shale gas supply. Transport is minimally electrified, so renewable power cannot yet substitute oil in that sphere. And prices for commodity input often rise along with oil, increasing renewable costs (a.k.a. the "receding horizon").

The first, I totally agree with. The second is broadly speaking true, although paths like CNG, gas-to-liquids and coal-to-liquids become economically viable with high oil prices and could re-strengthen the link between transport and electric power (as could increasing EV penetration over the longer term). The third is directionally true, but not absolute (and not entirely causal). Many second-gen biofuels use waste inputs which are not otherwise traded, so higher oil prices are an unmitigated boon for them. The prices of silicon and corn are often correlated with crude, but probably more because of overall economic growth than because crude drives their price. It will be interesting to see if corn starts to price off of its value as ethanol, as it did back in 2008. Not good for food security, if it does.

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