We leave here some of our thoughts and findings ... which led us to spearhead the SAY YES TO ALTERNATIVE ENERGIES AND SAY NO TO OIL AND GAS IN THE ALGARVE as an ASMAA initiative.
We face two possible energy futures.
The first, fossil-fuelled future is the one we’re heading for if we carry on down our current energy path. This is the future that current government policies and business practices will take us to, according to mainstream energy experts. This is a future of runaway climate change and widespread human suffering.
In the second, cleaner and fairer future, we know that it is possible to provide everyone on the planet with a high quality lifestyle, with access to education, medical care, efficient transport, comfortable homes, and entertainment, all powered by existing clean energy technologies.
Why is energy so important?
Energy is fundamental to our way of life. Energy powers the lights and appliances in our homes, and provides us with hot water. Energy is needed to transport people and goods across countries and around the planet. Energy is needed in manufacturing, agriculture and construction to create the goods we use, the buildings we live in and the food we eat.
Unfortunately there are two big problems with the way we currently generate and use energy.
- We rely on fossil fuels that have a limited supply, cause local environmental and social devastation, and are leading us to a future of rapid, disastrous climate change. This would mean more droughts, storms, floods, sea level rises, mass extinctions, a collapse in global food and freshwater supplies and an increase in war and conflict around the globe.
- Energy use is extremely unfair and inefficient. While the richest 11% of the world’s population produce around 50% of CO2 emissions, 19% of people don’t even have access to electricity, and millions more struggle to pay their energy bills. Also, nearly 25% of all energy generated is lost as waste.
Fortunately, it doesn’t need to be this way forever.
We don’t need to burn fossil fuels.
Although many would tell you otherwise, the fact is that we can power the world without them. We already have all the renewable energy technology we need to create a cleaner, fairer future. There is no need to turn to dangerous, unproven technologies to extract more fossil fuels. In fact, "unconventional" oil sources such as tar sands, fracking, shale oil and deep sea drilling provide no long term solution to our energy problems, while making our environmental and social ones a whole lot worse.
But is it realistic? Could a cleaner fairer future really happen?
It would require people all over the globe standing together to demand change – but this is already starting to happen. Most people in the world support a shift away from fossil fuels.
Meanwhile, the fossil-fuelled future is based on some very dubious assumptions – it assumes that tar sands, gas fracking, deepwater oil rigs, nuclear power, and biofuels really will generate as much energy as those industries claim, and that communities affected by all this destructive activity won’t take a stand to stop them.
It assumes that massive global energy inequality will continue unchallenged for the next twenty years, and that the entire human race will simply allow the world to slide into irreversible climate change. How likely does all of that sound?
This isn’t the only possible safe future.
Neither ASMAA, or many of the organizations working with us, are pretending that we have all the correct answers! But we aim to show that the world already has the technology to give everyone a good quality of life without needing coal, or tar sands, or gas fracking, or deep sea (offshore) drilling; and more importantly, without tipping the world into irreversible climate disaster.
The real future will probably look different to both of the options presented on this website. But don’t ever let anyone tell you that we "need" fossil fuels to power the world. We don’t.
If you are interested in understanding more about both energy sectors Click on this link