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Symposium 2012

Reassessing Renewable Energies

The Challenge

Two thirds of global electricity is generated from fossil fuels. This implies that more than 40% of global carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels stem from electricity generation. While there is potential for efficiency improvements, global demand for electricity is expected to rise, which will further aggravate the problem, especially in developing countries.

To reduce carbon emissions from electricity, energy generation from coal and to some extent from natural gas will have to be replaced by lowcarbon alternatives, including hydropower, bioenergy, solar, wind, nuclear and “carbon capture and storage” (CCS). Globally, there is easily enough potential to meet global electricity demand by using solar or wind energy or other generation options, such as biomass or geothermal.

At present, electricity generated from renewable sources is more expensive than conventional electricity. This would be even more the case with high shares of intermittent electricity (for example, fluctuating wind or solar energy) since additional storage and/or backup capacity would also need to be priced in.

But renewable energy is more scalable than large centralized systems and can thus be deployed on a more decentralized basis close to the consumer. In developing countries particularly, decentralized systems are able to improve access to electricity.

What is the optimal energy mix, now and in the longer term? Should the world follow Germany and phase out nuclear—or follow China and phase in nuclear?

CCS would allow for continued use of fossil fuels. But the technology has yet to prove its feasibility on a commercial scale: its costs are uncertain; and underground storage of carbon might also be unacceptable to local people. Might building fossil fuel power plants also worsen “lock-in” effects in energy generation?

What are the implications of the optimal mix of renewable energy investment and policy? Could small-scale renewable sources, such as bioenergy, play an important role in decentralized systems for the reinforcement and sustainability of towns and rural communities?

Can the experience of Brazil and other countries be transferred elsewhere and scaled up? If so, what steps need to be taken to establish a regional project, which on a large scale would help to solve the global problems of distribution and use of renewable energy? What framework is needed to enhance international coordination and should there be an underlying global legal framework?

    Solutions

    Solution
    Symposium 2012

    Finance the transition to renewable energy by redirecting fossil energy subsidies and, especially in developing countries, by using international oil revenues.

    Finance the transition to renewable energy by redirecting fossil energy subsidies and, especially in developing countries, by using international oil revenues.

    Finance the transition to renewable energy by redirecting fossil energy subsidies and, especially in developing countries, by using international oil revenues.

    Business
    Solution
    Symposium 2012

    Start building up an environmentally sustainable capital stock of power plants for the future.

    Start building up an environmentally sustainable capital stock of power plants for the future.

    Start building up an environmentally sustainable capital stock of power plants for the future.

    Polity, Business
    Solution
    Symposium 2012

    Local circumstances should dictate the renewable energy mix.

    Local circumstances should dictate the renewable energy mix.

    Local circumstances should dictate the renewable energy mix.

    Polity, Academia, Business
    Solution
    Symposium 2012

    When evaluating renewable energy sources, adopt a holistic approach, considering all the potential contributions to sustainability and all the potential stumbling blocks rather than focusing only on climate change.

    When evaluating renewable energy sources, adopt a holistic approach, considering all the potential contributions to sustainability and all the potential stumbling blocks rather than focusing only on c ...

    When evaluating renewable energy sources, adopt a holistic approach, considering all the potential contributions to sustainability and all the potential stumbling blocks rather than focusing only on climate change.

    Polity, Academia, Business, Civil Society

    Proposals

    Proposal
    Symposium 2012

    Energy-supply-proposals by Mr. Rolf SALO, Hamburg/ Germany

    Energy-supply-system in Suriname – present situation:   More than 70% fossil fuels (EBS plant in Suriname) In addition: hydropower by Suralco-hydropower-plant at Lake Brokopondo (energy sold to EBS ...

    Energy-supply-system in Suriname – present situation:   More than 70% fossil fuels (EBS plant in Suriname) In addition: hydropower by Suralco-hydropower-plant at Lake Brokopondo (energy sold to EBS)  Energy-grid concentrated in Paramaribo, its surroundings, followed by the region of Nickerie Low energy prizes (subsidies) “Inland”: wood as the main source; electricity by generators (Diesel)   Solution:   Long-term-strategy Modernize the ESB-plant and modernize/expand the grid Reducing fossil fuels in steps, reducing the subsidies on fossil-energy expanding hydro-power Decentralized feed in of solar- and wind-energy into the grid Subsidies on hydro/solar/wind financed by reduction of fossil-energy and additional subsidies Built up

    Business
    Proposal
    Symposium 2012

    Reassessing Renewable Energies

    1. Get the Basics Right Shifting to renewable energy sources is a practical response to the challenge of enabling environmentally sustainable economic progress.  It reflects an intent to reduce our d ...

    1. Get the Basics Right Shifting to renewable energy sources is a practical response to the challenge of enabling environmentally sustainable economic progress.  It reflects an intent to reduce our dependence on carbon-based fuels, effect greater electrification of the energy sector, make technological breakthroughs in grid management, blend base load inputs with those derived from a range of renewable sources, and to permit sophisticated management of demand. Despite these comprehensive goals, present indications are that hydrocarbon fuels will still be the basis of the energy mix in 2035. The International Energy Agency’s most ambitious scenario for carbon abatement shows a

    Polity, Academia
    Proposal
    Symposium 2012

    Reassessing Renewable Energies: Innovative Energy Concept for Suriname

    As consultant of the Surinamese Government we establish development projects in the country in several fields: Human resources, education and training, business development and technology transformati ...

    As consultant of the Surinamese Government we establish development projects in the country in several fields: Human resources, education and training, business development and technology transformation. Our guidelines are country-specific solutions, aid and support to self-help and strengthening the self responsibility of the country. One of our proposals for this program “Prospect and Prosperity for Suriname” is an innovative energy concept. The goals are using the power of hydropower, wind, solar, geothermal, bio fuels and modern biomass as sustained energy sources. The creation of jobs in the energy sector is as well in the focus as helping to reduce emissions

    Polity, Business, Civil Society
    Proposal
    Symposium 2012

    Re-evaluation Of Renewable Energy

    The brutal drought which reduced the North American crop of grains left the fragility of worldwide nourishment safety programs exposed, by requiring one vigorous reorganization of this theme, with glo ...

    The brutal drought which reduced the North American crop of grains left the fragility of worldwide nourishment safety programs exposed, by requiring one vigorous reorganization of this theme, with global governance. Some governments of European countries immediately found a responsible for this drama: the agrienergy and its biofuels. Attention should be given to this theme, by finally defining the imposing role of tropical and emergent countries on the production of agrienergy, without competing with food and with sustainability. As for the nourishment safety issue, the production’s goal for different countries should be established, in accordance with its capacity, technology and

    Polity, Business
    Proposal
    Symposium 2012

    Reassessing Renewable Energies

    Formulate a global, long term energy vision and act according to it The climate goal of limiting temperature change to 2 degree is generally acknowledged, for example in the 2009 Copenhagen accord. Wh ...

    Formulate a global, long term energy vision and act according to it The climate goal of limiting temperature change to 2 degree is generally acknowledged, for example in the 2009 Copenhagen accord. While this defines a long-term vision, immediate impacts and pathways on how to reach this target are not obvious. It is important to recognize this long term target and countries should commit to reduce CO2 emissions accordingly. While it is not likely that there will be a full global carbon market in the near future, national policies should be in line with such a vision. Leading researchers

    Polity, Academia, Business, Civil Society

    Background Paper

    Background Paper
    Symposium 2012

    Reassessing Renewable Energies

    Renewable energy contributes not only to mitigate climate change and reduce other environmental problems, it also contributes to diversify the energy mix and support local economic development. Repl ...

    Renewable energy contributes not only to mitigate climate change and reduce other environmental problems, it also contributes to diversify the energy mix and support local economic development. Replacing fossil fuels with renewable energies and other low-carbon energy sources reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) and curb global warming. To achieve ambitious climate stabilization goals, renewable energy technologies (hydro power, bioenergy, biomass, solar, wind, and geothermal) as well as low-carbon energy sources (nuclear and power plants equipped with carbon capture and storage (CCS)) are expected to play an important and increasing role.

    This policy brief presents a long term assessment of low-carbon energies including renewables, nuclear and fossil energy with CCS. The policy brief targets the electricity sector from a global to a regional perspective and from centralized to decentralized energy systems. The policy brief aims at finding answers to the following questions: What role can and should renewable energy play in the next decades on the way to a low-carbon energy future. What is the optimal electricity mix (now and in the future)? What are the implications of the optimal mix regarding renewable energy investment and policy? What framework would be needed to enhance international coordination?

    Polity, Academia, Business, Civil Society