A new report from Greenpeace International argues that it is financially feasible to move towards 100 per cent renewable energy by 2050 and create up to 20 million new jobs in the process.
Energy [R]evolution scenario 2015, which was researched in collaboration with the German Aerospace Centre (DLR), details how the investment needed to move toward 100 per cent renewable energy in the next 35 years would be more than covered by savings in future fuel costs.
The report finds that the average additional investment needed in renewables until 2050 is around USD 1 trillion a year. But because renewables do not require fuel, the savings over the same period would be around USD 1.07 trillion a year, more than meeting the costs of the required investment by around 2025 or 2030.
Greenpeace and DLR also calculated that the move toward 100 per renewable would create millions of jobs worldwide: the solar PV industry could employ 9.7 million people by 2030 while jobs in wind power could grow to 7.8 million over the same period.
“The solar- and wind industries have come of age, and are cost-competitive with coal. It is very likely they will overtake the coal industry in terms of jobs and energy supplied within the next decade,” says Sven Teske of Greenpeace and lead author of the report. “Governments need to manage the dismantling of the fossil fuel industry which is moving rapidly into irrelevance.”
With the Paris climate summit less than three months away, Kumi Naidoo, executive director of Greenpeace International, is calling on “all those who say ‘it can’t be done’ to read this report and recognise that it can be done, it must be done.”