Right conclusion Greenpeace: fossil fuels obsolete in 2050?

Greenpeace, renewables, fossils, energy storage, reforestation, energy expert, research

governments need to manage the dismantling of the fossil fuel industry which protects it’s ‘old industry’ with major lobby activities

100% renewable energy in 2050? Is that possible? Don’t we need just a little bit of fossils and nuclear power to keep the world spinning? 

Greenpeace International, in collaboration with the German Institute of Engineering Thermodynamics, Systems Analysis & Technology Assessment concludes in their research that it is possible. According to the report, this is what we need to do:

  • additional investments in renewables until 2050: about $1 trillion a year
  • in jobs, the solar industry could employ 9.7 million people by 2030
  • protection, restoration and reforestation of forests
  • there are no major technical barriers to moving towards 100% renewable energy by 2050
  • governments need to manage the dismantling of the fossil fuel industry which protects it’s ‘old industry’ with major lobby activities
  • deliberate attempts by companies like Shell and BP to slow down or block green energy breakthroughs from startups by buying the innovations

Greenpeace says in it’s report

The necessary investment is more than covered by savings in future fuel costs. Because renewables don’t require fuel, the savings over the same period are $1.07 trillion a year, so more than meet the costs of the required investment, with the cross-over point happening between 2025 and 2030.

Energy experts about the calculations from Greenpeace

The Greenpeace scenarios are serious, accordion thing to engineer JP van Soest: thorough analyzes of what is possible. But he warns for the mainly technically forn of the calculations.

To use the full potential, scenario makers must make heroic assumptions. What is technically possible has been made reality in the Greenpeace scenario. And of course there are practical barriers. Think of:

– colonies of bats on beautiful wind locations
– extensive farming in areas where biomass can be grown
– vessels operating on the same route where blue energy can be generated

The reality is that technical solutions never achieve the full 100%.

Another skeptical is Van der Linden, professor at the Clingendael International Energy Programme.
The researchers assume that prises of fossils will rise. This is uncertain. f they are wrong and prices will stay low, many countries will choose the cheap route. Also, the estimated energy savings (because of a global fall of the energy demands) does not seem real.

You will find a copy of the report here.

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