Energy & Climate Change
Scientists worldwide agree that climate change is caused by carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels. The effects are likely to cause a great deal of suffering, especially among people in poor countries, who are least able to cope with natural disasters.
The dilemma we face is that...
- the modern world cannot function without energy,
- the current main sources of energy are fossil fuels,
- but burning fossil fuels is what is causing climate change
Energy - the more we use, the more we want.
In the past century, many more countries have become industrialised. They have moved from farming to industry as their main source of income, which has lifted many millions of people out of poverty. But as people become richer, they also want the things that come with money, like cars and electricity. This has led to ever rising energy use across the planet.
In 2006, the world demand for energy was estimated at 15 Terrawatts, or 15,000,000,000,000 watts of power. That's the same as lighting 25 old fashioned 100w light bulbs for every person on the planet, all at the same time. 86% of this energy came from burning fossil fuels.
Reducing fossil fuel use fairly.
According to the Tyndall Centre for Climate Research, to prevent the worst effects of climate change, the world needs to reduce carbon emissions by at least 80% by 2050.