The future of energy is renewable
Jon Hughes and Mark Anslow
27th February, 2009
The recent U-turn by of some of the UK's leading environmentalists - and one-time nuclear energy opponents - on the issue of nuclear energy, has caused vigourous debate in the media. Their reasoning is that we simply don't have the capacity to produce enough renewable energy to meet our needs. But as this comprehensive Ecologist report from 2007 shows the UK is really a renewable energy powerhouse.
Energy. Apparently, David Cameron has lots of it; Gordon Brown is strictly AC-DC; and Menzies Campbell is renewable. That is how the leaders of the UK’s main political parties (Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrat) were being described at the beginning of October, in the aftermath of their respective party conferences and the general election false start. It is a reflection of the business-as-usual collusion between media and politics that energy is viewed through the prism of personality politics rather than as the critical policy issue of the century.
Our profligate use of fossil fuels is the cause of climate change, and unless we take urgent action to reverse this trend we face climate catastrophe; apocalypse now. Yet energy is also the lifeblood of modern society. Without it we don’t have heat, light, cars, computers and digital archives. On current proven reserves and predicted usage of the world’s remaining reserves of fossil fuels and uranium, we could be struggling to keep these functions going in as little as 30 years.
This then should be the best of times. The converging crises of energy security and climate change dictate what we should do: defend the climate and end the energy...
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