The Dawn of the Renewable Energy Revolution underway
June 4th, 2004, Bonn, Germany: Following the largest ever inter-governmental meeting on renewable energy, held in Bonn over the past four days, Greenpeace described the event as a significant step but warned that the outcomes lacked the political will and urgency required to prevent dangerous climate change.
“The sun has just cracked the horizon on the dawn of the renewable energy revolution but has a long way to go yet,” said Steve Sawyer, Greenpeace International’s political director.
“Bonn has shown that renewable energy is on track to become a major global energy provider, backed by civil society, the business community, consumers, and trade unions. Unfortunately, most of the rapid growth in the industry in recent years is as a result of the policies of a handful of governments. The list of countries is now growing, but not fast enough.
”Most Governments acknowledge that renewable energy is the only way to prevent dangerous climate change but they are still not giving renewable energy the necessary political, fiscal and regulatory framework required,” said Sawyer.
At the Johannesburg Earth Summit in 2002, when German Chancellor, Gerhard Schroeder, offered to host the conference he challenged governments to come to Bonn with real new projects and real new money for renewable energies.
A number of significant steps have been taken in Bonn, most notably by China, whose leadership will give the renewable energy revolution an enormous boost. The Philippines and Egypt have set strong national renewable energy targets; and Spain and Denmark appear to be following suit. And the host country Germany’s strong political and financial support for renewable energy continues. However, the majority of industrialized nations fell well short. There is little new money.
“The European Union must take clear leadership. It should have brought a clear commitment to produce at least 20% of its energy from renewables by 2020, but instead brought confusion and a list of existing projects and policies,” said Sawyer.
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