Here are excerpts of US Secretary of State John Kerry’s Sunday February 16th speech in Jakarta, Indonesia, in which he outlined the connection between energy and climate change.
The global energy market is the future. The solution to climate change is energy policy. And this market is poised to be the largest market the world has ever known. Between now and 2035, investment in the energy sector is expected to reach nearly $17 trillion. That’s more than the entire GDP of China and India combined.
The great technology – many of you have your smart phones or your iPads, et cetera, here today – all of this technology that we use so much today was a $1 trillion market in the 1990s with 1 billion users. The energy market is a $6 trillion market with, today, 6 billion users, and it’s going to grow to maybe 9 billion users over the course of the next 20, 30, 40 years. The solution to climate change is as clear as the problem. The solution is making the right choices on energy policy. It’s as simple as that. And with a few smart choices, we can ensure that clean energy is the most attractive investment in the global energy sector.
To do this, governments and international financial institutions need to stop providing incentives for the use of energy sources like coal and oil. Instead, we have to make the most of the innovative energy technology that entrepreneurs are developing all over the world – including here in Indonesia, where innovative companies like Sky Energy are building solar and battery storage and projects that can help power entire villages.
And we have to invest in new technology that will help us bring renewable energy sources like solar, wind, and hydro power not only to the communities where those resources are abundant –but to every community and to every country on every continent.
I am very well aware that these are not easy choices for any country to make – I know that. I’ve been in politics for a while. I know the pull and different powerful political forces. Coal and oil are currently cheap ways to power a society, at least in the near term. But I urge governments to measure the full cost to that coal and that oil, measure the impacts of what will happen as we go down the road. You cannot simply factor in the immediate costs of energy needs. You have to factor in the long-term cost of carbon pollution. And they have to factor in the cost of survival. And if they do, then governments will find that the cost of pursuing clean energy now is far cheaper than paying for the consequences of climate change later.
Make no mistake: the technology is out there. None of this is beyond our capacity.
© 2014, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved.
Secretary of State Kerry: Climate Change is a Catastrophic Threat
Is Your Electricity Clean? Find Out With this EPA Tool
US Energy Use is Declining and Expected to Remain Flat Through 2015
Infographic – US Energy 2030: Energy Effiency / Energy Productivity
Infographic – International Energy Consumption and Carbon Footprints (World Energy Report)
Infographic – Countries with the Largest Dirty Energy Expansion
Redrawing the Energy-Climate Map: World Energy Outlook Special Report
Worldwatch is Helping the Philippines to Go 100 Percent Renewable
Higher Oil Prices a Blessing for Fracking but what about Renewables?
Why Oil Prices Matter for Renewable Energy
The “Third Industrial Revolution”: How Renewable Energy and the Internet are Changing the World
US Government Support for Renewable Energy Projects
The Solar Industry at a Glance: Past Present and Future
Global Wind Energy at a Glance (China, EU, US)
US Wind Energy Doubles and Eclipses Natural Gas in 2012
Global Clean Energy Investment Sets Record
Whats the Fracking Problem?
Natural Gas is Not Clean Energy
Energy Emissions Comparisons
IAIA12 Energy Future: The Role of Impact
8 Congressional Reports on Energy
Energy & Environmental Report
Breakdown of Obama’s Clean Energy
The Future of Energy and the Environment