Calls for investment push in clean energy market

Advanced Plasma Power was interested to note that earlier this month, the International Energy Agency issued a stark warning that unless there is significant investment in the development of clean energy technologies in the next five years, we risk reaching a crisis point in the effort to tackle climate change, which will not be easy to come back from.

The International Energy Agency published its report entitled ‘G20 Clean Energy, and Energy Efficiency Deployment and Policy Progress’, which assessed clean energy and energy efficiency technology deployment globally to date. The report found evidence of positive progression across the G20 countries, including:

-Deployment of clean energy technologies around the world is progressing rapidly

-Implementation of energy efficiency policies is improving

-Renewable energy technologies have seen significant growth rates in recent years (From 2005 to 2010, wind power grew at an average rate of 27% per year, and solar photovoltaic at an average rate of 56%)

-Governments are beginning to set goals to support the development of advanced vehicle markets. ‘Advanced vehicles’ refers to electric (which are battery powered), plug-in hybrid (which uses two sources of power –   most  commonly petrol and electric) and fuel cell models (which convert hydrogen into electricity)

Source: International Energy Agency website

However, although good progress is starting to be made and there is a widespread acknowledgement of the threat of climate change, the balance has not yet tipped in the direction it needs to. The world is still largely dependent on fossil fuels to satisfy growth in global energy demand and although some action has been taken at a political level, not enough has been done to drive renewable energy development in terms of matching the targets set.

In the UK, for example, a quarter of nuclear and coal power plants are to shut by 2020 and under the EU’s Renewable Energy Directive, the UK must source 15% of its energy from renewable sources by 2020, however these targets are not currently not being met.

The International Environment Agency’s warning of a 2017 ‘deadline’ to shift the generation of energy away from coal and towards clean energy technologies stems from the estimated level of emissions which will come from coal and gas power plants over the next five years, which effectively already go above and beyond the maximum amount of carbon in the atmosphere that is deemed safe. These levels of emissions will continue to rise for as long as these plants continue to be used, and new ones built – and with it so will temperatures rise, inducing potentially catastrophic climate change.

A transition to a much needed green and low-carbon economy to offset these emissions is vital. For this to happen, there needs to be a much increased and sustained investment in green energy technologies, from both the public and private sectors. Technologies such as Advanced Plasma Power’s unique two-stage gasification process, Gasplasma®, offer an exceptional opportunity to deliver an alternative risk free energy source from waste. This solution simultaneously addresses the challenges faced by both the waste management industry and the energy generation industry by using waste as a resource. There is a strong potential for waste-to-energy technologies such as Gasplasma® to help meet the government’s “zero waste” targets whilst also providing a clean local energy supply, which can in time remove our need for an over-reliance on fossil fuels as a source of energy – the perfect solution for a greener, cleaner future. For this to be realised, it is crucial that the government and private investors see the value in the clean energy technologies of tomorrow.

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