The World Council for Renewable Energy declares: After COP-out 17: Code RED

WCRE Press Release 12 December 2011

After COP-out 17: Code RED
Durban rings death knell for emissions based negotiations control: rise of a renewable energy path to climate control can no longer wait

For the 17th time the global community's attempts to control the explosion in greenhouse gas emissions has failed miserably - a tragic yet predictable outcome. The reasons were only in part power-politics-as-usual by the polluting countries, trapped in an economic model rewarding short term profit over humanity's survival.

The approach to negotiations itself is flawed, focused on positions around lowest common denominators while aiming at an indirect and difficult to track dimension - carbon emissions - rather than aiming direct action at the source of pollution: fossil fuel burning and land cover destruction. The net result is an agreement to slow the progress towards a sustainable and indeed survivable world. The exclusive focus on carbon not only favors perverse non-solutions such as carbon capture and storage (CCS), or dangerous dead-end systems such as nuclear power, it also distracts from the greatest immediate risk to economic stability: peak oil.

Fossil fuels impoverish the planet: they are an obstacle to local prosperity and they kill scores every day. Ignoring the plight of the poor as well their own future, vested interests from Germany to South Africa agreed to perpetuate the carbon rich global energy system. King Coal rules, placing the future of billions at risk. US, Indian or Chinese posturing hit a new low in calling for a 'legal agreement' by 2015 to de facto postpone action to 2020, while sidestepping tangible agreements on deforestation altogether. Scientists from MIT to NASA agree that these remaining nine years are precisely the time frame within which the point of new return in emissions inaction will have been reached, triggering climate feedback mechanisms to a degree where runaway climate chaos becomes virtually unstoppable. Is humanity’s fate sealed?

Instead of uselessly venting anger and frustration it is time to focus on the problem itself: the global energy infrastructure. The WCRE calls for a massive proliferation of renewable energy systems and other sustainable development practices, from the bottom up, using any available legislation as well as the increasingly favorable market conditions due to peaking fossil fuel supplies. Renewable energy and sustainable natural resource markets rise inexorably, giving rise to hope to billions. The WCRE declares a global Code RED - the Renewable Earth Decade, the race to a predominantly renewable world by 2020 when most of the world's people will live in villages, cities and countries that have set themselves full renewable energy autonomy as practical goal - and move toward it. Renewable Earth Decade marks the global celebration and prolific adoption of the numerous individual, local, business, urban and national moves to a fully renewably powered world that already exists today. Renewable Earth Decade accelerates innovations in sustainable soil and biological food production: these also help sequester the daily mounting, massive excess in atmospheric greenhouse gas concentration caused by fossil fuel combustion, cement production, and wetland and land cover destruction. There is barely a decade left to act - as there has been no time to wait for the past 25 years.

Professor Peter Droege, General Chairman WCRE, President EUROSOLAR

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