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EVEN IF DONALD TRUMP DOES NOT YET ‚BELIEVE IN’ CLIMATE CHANGE – there are millions of reasons for the fundamental transformation of the world’s energy systems to renewable resources.

Millions of lives have been sacrificed on the altar of fossil fuels – and many million more are doomed if we will not make the switch to renewable energy world-wide. To work for peace means finally leaving the 20th century behind, a century of war and an age of conflict exacerbated by fatal energy systems. It is in our common interest to lay down arms and join in the struggle against our own inherited energy and resource dependencies.

State of The Transition, August 2016: Tailwinds for clean energy and the Paris agreement, deepening doldrums for the incumbency

It was vaguely wonderful watching Presidents Obama and Xi cement their bids for a place in history, via climate change, by announcing American and Chinese ratification of the Paris Agreement on 3rd September 2016. These two nations, so far apart on so many issues, have erected glass walls around the shared climate threat and worked hard together for four years to fight it. They do so now buoyed by the strengthening momentum of climate-survival technologies, and aware of the increasing catalogue of problems faced by the energy incumbency notwithstanding climate considerations. Meanwhile, the increasingly alarming warnings they hear about the unfolding pace of global overheating from their respective scientific establishments is undoubtedly a major motivator. The great global race against time has very much begun now, and they are the undisputed leaders on the first lap.

Many businesses need no further persuasion of the writing on the wall. Six hundred multinational companies are now factoring the Paris Agreement into their business plans, according to CDP. Unsurprisingly, utilities and other energy companies lead, but adopters span many sectors. Sign-ups to the corporate 100% renewable power campaign this month include Apple.

In 2016, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has a major opportunity to develop a new industry, an opportunity that became something of an imperative in 2015. Let me examine first the opportunity, then the imperative. The opportunity involves solar energy, which is fast heading towards becoming the cheapest unsubsidised form of energy on the planet. Last year, solar power plants cheaper than gas plants were built in Dubai and Colorado. A Saudi company, ACWA Power, built the one in Dubai. We can expect to see more such plants around the world in 2016, and many more beyond.

Oil & gas companies are professing that the natural-gas and solar industries should be partners, working together supposedly to mutual benefit. It is a strategy that should be avoided by all solar companies able to do so – which is to say all those not owned by oil & gas companies – as long as the oil and gas industry pursues its current goal of growing gas use for decades to come.

We wish you a healthy and peaceful Year of the Monkey and 2016 - in the conviction that the immediate and unequivocal move the renewable energy is empowering and supports peace. The signs are auspicious: not only great opportunities in economic shifts, but also great shifts in cultural realities support a rapid move to the regenerative age. And just in time.

Renewable Energies are a human responsibility
Presented by Peter Droege

The construction and commissioning of the solar roof on the Pius IV-reception hall on 26 November 2008 was inspired by EUROSOLAR and Hermann Scheer and financed by SolarWorld. In November 2014, a delegation with representatives from EUROSOLAR and WCRE attended the General Papal Audience and submitted a petition to Pope Francis to embrace a 100 % Renewable Church. This act reflected a beginning attitude by the Vatican towards acknowledging the need to act against climate change and to move towards the use of renewable energy. Since then there has been no clearer position from Rome than the now published encyclical letter ‚Laudatio Si’ – On Care for our Common Home, published on 24 May 2015. The letter identifies the use of fossil fuels as a fundamental problem and presents an entire series of important statements about the need to rapidly and broadly move to renewable energy. No word is wasted on nuclear energy.

Dear fellow solar advocates

A wonderful example of a big problem we face yesterday. As you may have seen, a main UK news story was that a small oil company claims to have found up to 100 billion barrels of oil below the Weald region of southern England.  They estimate that up to 15 billion barrels is recoverable, about as much as Brazil's proved reserves. They base this on a single drill site with no flow measurements. Beyond ludicrous.

This monstrous piece of hype went without challenge at the top of the TV news bulletins I saw through the day, even as the company's share price soared through the roof. In the evening, I had a call from a radio station asking for an interview about how the UK should spend all the money.

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