6 reasons to support the clean energy drive
India is a world leader in renewable energy in the world. About 35% of its total energy consumption comes from renewable sources. In fact, the country is about to achieve renewable energy production of 175 GW by 2022.
The progress on this front can be attributed to the Prime Minister’s target of achieving 450GW of renewables by 2030. Even at the global level, the share of renewable energy has grown to over 33% in the past decade. While Germany aims to shift 65% of its energy demand to renewables by 2030, China has recently installed the largest solar and wind capacity plant in the world. Even small countries like Costa Rica are producing 95% of its electricity from hydro, geothermal, solar and wind sources.
So what is driving this shift and why do we need more of it? Here’s a look at the factors that make a compelling case for the sector:
- Combats Climate Change: It is no secret that the burning of fossil fuel results in the emission of greenhouse gases. These function as a blanket, trapping the heat inside and leading to global warming. Renewable energy sources create negligible emissions in the entire lifecycle of the technologies.
- Extends Economic Benefits: Renewable energy sources lower the associated costs and stabilize energy prices. By creating alternative sources of working, new job opportunities can be created, overhauling the energy chain with reliability and resilience. The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) reports that the sector employs about 10.3 million people worldwide. Moreover, for any property that saves one dollar on energy bills, its value increases by $20.
- Boosts Energy Security: Owing to the ever prevalent geopolitical and geographical uncertainty, non-renewable energy sources are always at the mercy of countless external factors. For instance, a significant amount of oil is stored in locations that are both technically challenging and expensive to reach. Due to their natural abundance, renewable sources come with significantly lower hurdles.
- Sustainable Transport: Renewable energy paves the way for sustainable transport technologies, such as biofuels and electro-fuels. This will allow renewable electricity to eventually power the entire fleets of electric vehicles in India and around the world. Smarter car batteries can also act as storage units of electricity. Alternatively, electric car companies such as Tesla are building comprehensive destination charging networks.
- Long-term Certainty: With the right nurturing ecosystem in the form of policy measures and financial support, renewable energy sources are much more robust in nature. While wind farms can last up to 30 years, hydro-power plants can last even more. And with the requisite technological development, solar modules and wind turbines will only get more efficient. Comparing this with the upward trend of non-renewable energy prices only makes things work.
- Improved Public Health: Natural gas and fuels produce pollutants have been linked to health issues such as breathing problems, neurological damage, heart attacks, and numerous such serious issues. The ensuing costs for the economy are also significant, with a Harvard Study estimating the public health effects of coal to be $74.6 billion every year in the United States alone.
All this and more signifies how crucial renewable energy is for a sustainable future.