The vision of a world mostly powered by forms of renewable energy – be it solar, wind, wave or whatever – is something all of us who cover this topic hope for someday. The question is – when will that happen? Greenpeace seems to think it might be able to happen for the vast majority of us by 2050, according to an ambitious plan it has laid out that would also see by that same year CO2 emissions lowered by 80 percent compared to levels from 1990.
Energy [R]evolution, Greenpeace’s detailed plan for clean energy, calls for 95 percent renewable electricity by 2050. This is definitely a very lofty goal, but one the non-profit believes is attainable. To make this happen, a more green-based global workforce will have to take shape, which Greenpeace believes could hit ideally 8.5 million renewable energy jobs by 2030. This is compared to a “business as usual” number which would amount to 2.4 million of the global power sector’s 8.7 million jobs. It is also believed that well managed growth could spur the overall annual market for renewable technology to increase from around US$100 billion today to more than US$600 billion by 2030.
Greenpeace, which teamed up with more than 30 scientists and engineers from universities, institutes and the renewable energy industry for the Energy [R]evolution report, notes that to get to these lofty goals a number of ambitious things will have to happen. These include decentralized power systems, “super grids” to transport large quanities of offshore wind and concentrating solar power and investment costs shared fairly by a “global climate regime.” We will, of course, also have to end as much as possible dependency upon fossil fuels, make things run much more energy efficient and increase renewable energy research funding, among other recommendations.
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