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The Energy Report - A fully sustainable and renewable global energy system is possible by 2050

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Published on Aug 22, 2012

For several reasons, the world will need an adapted energy system to accommodate its growing population. Climate change, depletion of natural resources and a growing dependence on only a few energy suppliers are a threat to our current system.

Renewable sources such as solar energy, wind, hydro and bio-energy are necessary for a sustainable balance. The Energy Report, published by Ecofys and WWF in February 2011, demonstrates that a fully sustainable and renewable global energy system is possible by 2050. At the heart of The Energy Report lies the Ecofys Energy Scenario which charts technical, social and economic developments in all energy carriers, all regions and all sectors of the global energy system.

First, the scenario forecasts a future level of energy-consuming activities (e.g. tonnes of steel used), based on a growing population and a tripling of the world's economy. These services would be delivered with a minimum of energy and material use. Second, the scenario ranks the sources to provide the energy for these activities based on sustainability. Energy from the sun, wind, water and heat from the earth's crust are prioritised and will contribute to a further electrification of our society. Only once these options are exhausted is bio-energy deployed.

An important condition in the scenario is the development towards a sustainable standard of living around the world, based on increasing equity between different regions. Upfront financing will be required, but in the long term, benefits will outweigh costs.

The Energy Report has become the basis for engagement with business and policy leaders worldwide in WWF's initiative to achieve a fully renewable energy system by 2050.

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