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Energy Blog UN Calls for ’Tripling’ of Renewable Energy Use

UN Calls for ’Tripling’ of Renewable Energy Use

Chris Hurcombe
by Chris Hurcombe April 16, 2014
high voltage engineering

The United Nations has to called on world leaders to triple the planet’s use of renewable energy in a new report on climate change this month.  Titled “Mitigation of Climate Change” by the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the report – revealed on Sunday – highlights the increased carbon emissions produced in the last few decades as being a catalyst for climate change.

The panel presenting the report does say that this can be reversed, but only if a “massive shift” in the commercial energy marketplace is made within the next decade.

Scientists behind the report made the ominous conclusion that if significant action isn’t taken by 2030, global temperatures could rise by more than two degrees Centigrade – something that will be “highly dangerous” to the environment.

At the heart of the report is suggestions and instructions for governments on how to implement them to avoid climate change.  ‘Clean’ power sources such as solar and wind gain much of the spotlight, with the headline from the report being that the overall output from renewable energy sources must triple – or even quadruple – for any sort of sustainable difference to be made.

One form of non-renewable energy that did get a somewhat-positive feature in the report was natural gas. The 200 scientists on the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said they ‘cautiously endorse’ countries shifting to natural gas as a stop-gap to get them off more carbon intensive sources, faster.

Early opposition to the findings and guidance in the report have come in the form of some developing countries. Indeed, nations on the Indian sub-continent are rapidly set to overtake China in coal usage as their industrial sectors provide much of GDP. For such a shift to occur in their market, they would need the cost of upgrading and moving to renewables to be born proportionately by all the member states in the UN.

Speaking at the conference in Berlin, the heads of the IPCC said that the technology for more cleaner, more efficient energy sources already exists, and thats where their governments should be investing.

The UK Energy market will also come under scrutiny; upon taking office, David Cameron promised that the Coalition government would be among the ‘greenest ever’. However, controversy over energy prices, cuts on subsidies for solar power, ‘new nuclear’ and fracking will likely leave raise many questions on whether the UK will is in a position to comply with the UN’s advice.