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A World Free from Fossil Fuels - Greenpeace

Page history last edited by PBworks 11 years, 10 months ago

A World Free of Fossil Fuels - Greenpeace Report Offers a Plan

November 6, 2008



GLOBE-Net (November 6, 2008) - The worst effects of global warming can be avoided if policy makers aggressively invest in renewable power and energy efficiency. Energy [Revolution], a new report by Greenpeace and the European Renewable Energy Council, outlines a detailed plan to end the world’s dependence on fossil fuels. Renewable energy, according to the authors, could provide all our global energy needs by 2090.


A three-step approach would have to be adopted to reach that goal. One would be to focus on electricity efficiency. By better insulating our homes and offices, improving the energy efficiency of our appliances and by replacing water heaters with solar collectors, wealthy countries could reduce their power consumption by 10 percent.


A second approach would be to design better buildings. For instance, the facades and roofs of apartment and office buildings are ideal for harvesting solar energy. They also could get their energy from neighboring wind farms. In fact, the study calls for decentralizing energy systems to make use of locally available energy sources such as wind, sun or geothermal. It also argues for implementing cogeneration technologies which reuses thermal energy currently escaping into the atmosphere.


Third the report calls for efficient transport systems. This means a shift from road to rail, stricter fuel efficiency standards and a move to electric cars.


All of which would cost $14.7 trillion by 2030. But the study argues that because renewable energy has no fuel costs, the total financial savings would reach $18.7 trillion.


"A comparison between the extra fuel costs associated with business as usual and the extra investment costs of the Energy Revolution shows that the average annual additional fuel costs of the former are about five times higher than the additional investment requirements of the Energy Revolution Scenario," says the report.


In other words climate change can be reversed if governments jump on the renewable energy bandwagon. The report is long - 212 pages - but it is worth the read because it is one of the few studies that provides a detailed scenario with specific numbers that make the quest for a fossil-free world a real possibility. The report is also available in a summarized version.

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