The path to a sustainable future
The goal of Sustainable Development is to meet the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. This means that we have to provide enough energy and material resources for the next generations, an objective that can by achieved by two parallel measures: increasing our resource efficiency and transitioning to renewable resources.
The figure shows the total primary energy demand of the EU. The "Negajoules" band on top indicates the energy being saved by efficiency measures, based on 1971 energy usage. The basic message is: The energy demand is rising, and without efficiency measures the increase would be even higher. In spite of remarkable energy savings by efficiency measures, the total demand has not been reduced. Due to the pressure of an increasing energy demand a significant transition to renewable resources has not yet occurred and is likely to be marginal further on. If we wish to provide energy resources for future generations, the measures have to be deeply intensified. This is also of particular importance for the protection of the climate.
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