How Do You Launch a Potentially World-Changing Energy Technology?

It’s been over five years since Andrea Rossi first went public with his E-Cat. I don’t need to rehearse the twists and turns that have taken place since January 2011, when Rossi and Focardi held their first press conference in Bologna. In early 2011 Rossi was predicting that E-Cats would be on the market within a year, yet here we are, still waiting for the commercialization of LENR technology in a world filled with energy challenges.

To me it is sounding more and more likely that sometime in 2016 the E-Cat will be ready to go on sale for people to use. But how do you launch such a product?

However you do it, I don’t think it can be done painlessly, without upsetting someone or something. The fortunes of nations, businesses and individuals are tied in with energy production in one way or another. Even if you don’t work in the energy sector, billions of dollars of average people (maybe a good portion your retirement account) are invested in financial securities connected to the energy industry in some way.

Here are some possible approaches.

1. You launch a publicity campaign and say in effect: “Here it is, here’s what it can do, who wants to buy it? If you don’t believe me, here’s a report that shows how the E-Cat acted over a 1 year period”. You put products on the market, take orders, and trust the marketplace to take care of the disruptions that might occur.

2. A more low-key approach. You release a report with data verified by a third party and let people study it out for themselves, and invite them to contact you privately if they want to explore the technology further. Commercial development is done quietly under NDA.

3. A gradual and controlled introduction of the technology. You do all you can to soften the blow for people who will be adversely affected by a disruptive energy technology. You do all you can to keep information off the front pages but build support in private, making alliances and getting buy-in from a broad base of people in industry and government. You try to anticipate negative societal change ahead of time, and launch the product gradually in selected markets so as to keep the disruption to a minimum. You give governments time to prepare to introduce laws and regulations on how and where, and for how much this technology should be used and taxed, and how it can be prevented from being used for destructive and criminal purposes, hoping for social stability and providing compensation for parties that might be adversely affected.

4. You don’t launch it. After analysis and consultations you forsee too many serious social problems being caused by such a radical technology and decide it’s for the greater good to keep it from being released — for the time being at least — and somehow bury it.

I realized these are rather simplistic options — the real world is going to be much more complex than is outlined here, with lots of different variables to be taken into account. But the point here is that if the E-Cat works as Andrea Rossi claims, there has never been an energy product like it released into the world. It would be a truly revolutionary technology, and I can’t think of a precedent of how to deal with it. We might look at the launch of nuclear power, but that was rolled out by governments with strict supervision for safety purposes. The E-Cat is coming from the private sector, is vastly cheaper than nuclear fission, and the same safety concerns do not apply.

There’s no rule book in place on how this is to be done, so if this happens, however it is done it will be breaking new ground, and it will be very interesting to see what happens.