Renewed Hope for Renewable Energy

A decade ago, renewable energy was viewed as an unwelcome offspring of fossil fuels. But, with mounting concerns about climate change and volatility in oil and other fossil-fuel prices, renewables are finally becoming a serious proposition.

VIENNA – A decade ago, renewable energy was viewed as an unwelcome offspring of fossil fuels, but the recent establishment of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) indicates that governments worldwide are taking “renewables” seriously. With mounting concerns about climate change and volatility in oil and other fossil-fuel prices, renewables are finally becoming a viable proposition.

IRENA will be headquartered in the United Arab Emirates, in Masdar City, the world’s first carbon-neutral city, which will be constructed in the desert by 2011. The agency will also maintain two vital arms in Europe: an innovation and technology center in Bonn; and an office in Vienna for strategic alliances with other agencies, particularly the United Nations.

Close to $155 billion was invested in 2008 in renewable energy companies and projects worldwide, not including large-scale hydroelectric projects, according to a recent UN Environment Program report. On a global scale, the renewable energy sector created 2.3 million jobs in the past few years. In Germany alone, the sector’s growth has generated 250,000 new green jobs in less than ten years.

To continue reading, please log in or enter your email address.

To read this article from our archive, please log in or register now. After entering your email, you'll have access to two free articles from our archive every month. For unlimited access to Project Syndicate, subscribe now.

required

By proceeding, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, which describes the personal data we collect and how we use it.

Log in

http://prosyn.org/uXqGsxD;

Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated cookie policy and privacy policy.