Energy Blue Print
Media Centre 2010

Moving from principles to action for energy supply that mitigates against climate change requires a long-term perspective. Energy infrastructure takes time to build up; new energy technologies take time to develop. Policy shifts often also need many years to take effect. In most world regions the transformation from fossil to renewable energies will require additional investment and higher supply costs over about twenty years

Greenpeace energy blueprint shows governments how investing in green energy jobs can save the climate and end fossil fuel addiction

Berlin, 7 June 2010 – The renewable power industry could support 8.5 million jobs by 2030 (1), if governments seize the opportunity to invest in a greener future, according to one of the most comprehensive plans for future sustainable energy provision launched today by Greenpeace and the European Renewable Energy Council (EREC).

The report: ‘Energy [R]evolution: A Sustainable World Energy Outlook’(2), provides a detailed practical blueprint for cutting carbon emissions while achieving economic growth by replacing fossil fuels with renewable energy and energy efficiency. This phase-out of fossil fuels offers substantial benefits such as energy security, independence from world market fuel prices as well as the creation of millions of new green jobs.

“Our Energy Revolution scenario shows how to eliminate unpredictable fossil fuel costs, destructive mining and oil exploration and with it catastrophes such as the current BP Gulf oil spill,” said Sven Teske, Greenpeace International’s Senior Energy Expert and co-author of the report. “Investing in people, rather than dirty and dangerous fossil fuels not only boosts global economic development but stems catastrophic climate change.”

The Energy [R]evolution scenario shows how to create about 12 million jobs, that is 8.5 million in the renewables sector alone, by 2030. Under business as usual global renewable power jobs would be only 2.4 million of the global power sector’s 8.7 million jobs. By implementing the Energy [R]evolution 3.2 million or over 33% more jobs globally will be created in the power sector.

"While many additional ‘Just Transition’ policies will be needed to ensure workers will reap the benefits of a new low-carbon economy -skills, social protection, quality of jobs; the Energy Revolution report introduces interesting ideas which will scale up investments in renewable energies, something crucial if we want to fight future unemployment in the energy sector and avoid the poorest of the planet, whose jobs depend on natural resources, paying the costs of business-as-usual" said Guy Ryder, General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC).

The sustainable future of the planet is rooted in the investment in people and local communities who can install and maintain renewable energy sources, rather than further subsidising dirty and finite fossil fuels. The overall annual market for renewable technology will increase from around US$100 billion today, to more than US$600 billion by 2030.

Key to making the Energy [R]evolution a reality is creating a system in which investment costs are shared fairly under a global climate regime. One such mechanism, discussed in the report, is the Greenhouse Development Rights framework (GDR) (3) which calculates national shares of global greenhouse gas obligations based on a combination of responsibility (contribution to climate change) and capacity (ability to pay).

“The 2010 Energy Revolution report outlines pathways towards a 100% renewable energy supply for the world. It demonstrates that there is no technological barrier to achieving this vision and reaping its many benefits in terms of the environment and jobs. The barrier is political. All that is now needed to set sustainable energy future for our planet is the political will,” said Christine Lins, Secretary General of the European Renewable Energy Council (EREC).

Global CO2 emissions under the Energy [R]evolution scenario would peak in 2015 and drop afterwards. Compared with 1990 CO2 emissions will be more than 80% lower by 2050 if the energy supply is based almost entirely on renewable energies. By 2050 around 95% of electricity could be produced by renewable energy.

Copies of the “Energy [R]evolution: A sustainable World Energy Outlook” report can be downloaded at: www.greenpeace.org/energyrevolution  and www.energyblueprint.info

For more information contact:

  • Sven Teske, Greenpeace International renewable energy campaign, +31 62129 68 94
  • Alexandra Dawe, Greenpeace International Communications, +31 646177533
  • Greenpeace international Press Desk, +31 20 718 24 70
  • Christine Lins, Secretary General of EREC, +32 478 96 21 91
  • Mathieu Debroux (ITUC Press Officer, +32 476621018

Notes to Editors:

  1. The latest Energy [R]evolution report published today has two different energy [r]evolution scenarios. A moderate one with a global target of reducing 50% energy related CO2 globally by 2050 and an advanced one with a target of over 80% CO2 reduction (basis 1990 level). In this release we only present the results of the advanced scenario.
  2. This is the third edition of the global Energy [R]evolution scenario since the first one was published in January 2007, the analysis has been constantly deepened. In the second edition we introduced specific research for the transport sector and an investigation of the pathway to future investment in renewable energies. Since then we have published country specific scenarios for over 30 countries and regions, added a study of the employment implications of the scenarios and a detailed examination of how the grid network needs to be improved and adapted.
  3. For more information on GDR read chapter two of the report.
  4. The report was developed in conjunction with specialists from the Institute of Technical Thermodynamics at the German Aerospace Centre (DLR), the Dutch Institute Ecofys and more than 40 scientists and engineers from universities, institutes and the renewable energy industry around the world. The report provides a comprehensive global energy concept which gives a detailed analysis of how to restructure the global energy system based on a detailed regional assessment for the potential of proven renewable energy sources, energy efficiency and the utilisation of efficient, decentralised cogeneration. The Energy [R]evolution Scenario is compared to a ‘business as usual’ scenario provided by the International Energy Association’s breakdown of 10 world regions as used in the ongoing series of World Energy Outlook reports.
  5. For a more in depth briefing on the latest edition of the Energy [R]evolution scenario go to www.greenpeace.org/ER2010keyfacts
  6. To access infographics pease go to www.greenpeace.org/ER2010graphics
  7. To learn more about the Energy [R]evolution download our new iphone App at www.greenpeace.org/energyapp