A New Energy Policy - The European Perspective

bridges vol. 9, April 2006 / OpEds & Commentaries
by Madeleine Petrovic

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The world is currently confronted with a serious energy supply crisis. Crude oil and natural gasoline are becoming ever more expensive and scarce.

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At the same time, the world's demand for energy is steadily rising. Emerging economies such as China, India, and Brazil are speeding up this development. Continuing use of expensive fossil energy sources may lead to social problems and accelerate the incipient climate change. While supplies of coal are still plentiful, increased combustion of coal would accelerate the climate change. Any rise in the use of atomic energy would multiply the risks of accidents and circulation of weapons-grade nuclear material. The future lies in the development and use of renewable energy and the improvement of energy efficiency. This "Energy Revolution" is not only the way to go as far as environmental policy and climate policy are concerned, but creates new jobs and reduces the dependency of the worldwide energy supply on a few highly unstable geopolitical regions. Unlike crude oil and natural gasoline, renewable energy will not pose a reason to wage wars.


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