Clean energy to power the globe by 2050: Report

February 3rd, 2011 - 9:32 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Feb 3 (IANS) Energy needs around the world could be met more cleanly, renewably and economically by the year 2050, a report by the World Wide Fund (WWF) said Thursday.Titled ‘The Energy Report’, the study says that by 2050, power, transport, industrial and domestic energy needs could be met with isolated residual uses of fossil and nuclear fuels - vastly reducing anxieties over energy security, pollution and catastrophic climate change.

“If we continue to rely on fossil fuels, we face a future of increasing anxieties over energy costs, energy security and climate change impacts. We are offering an alternative scenario - far more promising and entirely achievable,” said WWF Director General Jim Leape.

Energy efficiency in buildings, vehicles and industry would be a key ingredient, along with an increase in the energy needs met through electric power which is renewably generated and supplied through smart grids.

Energy conservation organisation Ecofys acted as the consultant for the report.

“The report shows that the aim of meeting most energy needs from renewable sources will be a challenge, especially for countries like India. But it is one that we must aggressively move towards if we are to fuel sustainable economic growth that does not further imperil our already threatened environment and natural resources,” said Ravi Singh, chief executive officer and secretary general, WWF-India.

According to Ecofys, in 2050, the total energy demand will be 15 percent lower than in 2005, despite increases in population, industrial output, freight and travel.

“In this report, we are very deliberately not making extravagant assumptions about the benefits of technologies yet to come. This inherently means that this is a moderate estimate of the renewable energy future we could enjoy by 2050,” said Ecofys director Kees van der Leun.

Importantly, carbon dioxide emissions from the world’s energy supply sector would be reduced by over 80 per cent by 2050 - providing a high level of confidence that the average global temperature rise will be limited to the less than the two degrees Celsius, the threshold identified as presenting unacceptable risks of catastrophic climate change.

“We will live differently, but we will live well. We must provide energy for all without imperilling our planet, and this report shows that we can,” added Leape.

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