Energy [R]evolution 2015

Another excellent ISSUU publication bought to us by Greenpeace International. This time it’s a report researched and published by Greenpeace in collaboration with the scientific community, in particular the German Aerospace Centre (DLR). But first, more from Greenpeace International:

This is the year when the fight against climate change could take a dramatic turn. The conference in Paris in December presents political and business leaders with the opportunity to take the critical decisions needed if we are to keep average temperature rises to no more than 1.5 or 2 degrees Celsius. According to the IPCC, humankind cannot emit more than 1,000 giga-tonnes of CO2 from now, if we are to stay within this limit. At the current and projected rate of consumption, this entire carbon budget will be used by 2040.
It’s got some excellent recommendations on energy production and the need for a revolution, a complete overhaul to the way things are at the moment, which, in light of the effects of climate change and the impact of industrial pollution on our health, we’re in desperate need of:

Dynamic change is happening in energy supply, but the change needs to happen faster. this Energy [R]evolution scenario proposes a pathway to a 100% sustainable energy supply, ending CO2 emissions and phasing out nuclear energy, and making redundant new oil exploration in the arctic and deep sea waters such as off the coast of Brazil. it also demonstrates that this transformation increases employment in the energy sector.

In Australia, as far as the utilisation of solar energy and wind power goes, we seem to be slow of the mark, but it’s not like change won’t happen; is it?

What is required is for the political will to be there.

100% renewable energy for all is achievable by 2050, and is the only way to ensure the world does not descend into catastrophic climate change. Dynamic change is taking place in the energy sector. Renewable energies have become mainstream in most countries, and prices have fallen dramatically. The report shows we could transform our energy supply, switching to renewables, which would mean a stabilization of global CO2 emissions by 2020, and bringing down emissions towards near zero emissions in 2050.

Fossil fuels should be phased out in stages
The Energy [R]evolution proposes a phase-out of fossil fuels starting with lignite (the most carbon- intensive) by 2035, followed by coal (2045), then oil and then finally gas (2050). The rate of phase-out of oil and gas matches the rate of depletion of existing oil and gas fields. So exploration for new fields should be seen as high-risk investment as the “assets” may be stranded.
The renewable energy sector is proving it can transform power generation.

  • Renewables contributed 60% of new power generation worldwide in 2014
  • This expansion has meant huge falls in costs, so that solar PV and wind power is now cost-
    competitive with new coal in most regions
  • Renewables are pushing ahead despite a global subsidy system weighted in favour of
    fossil fuels, which receive an annual subsidy of $550 billion, more than twice the subsidy
    for renewables (IEA figures)
  • Within the next 15 years, renewables’ share of electricity could treble from 21% today to
    64%, so nearly two thirds of global electricity would come from renewable energy
    Heating and transport are the big challenge
  • Oil for heating will be replaced by solar collectors, geothermal and heat from renewable hydrogen
  • Gas will be the last fossil fuel in use, but is replaced by hydrogen generated by renewable electricity by 2050
  • Transport is the most challenging sector, and requires a technical revolution and more R&D – particularly in aviation and shipping. But planes and ships could be powered using biofuels, hydrogen and synthetic fuels produced using electricity. So electricity demand will go up, but it will be generated with renewable energy.
    The switch to 100% renewable energy will create jobs
  • At every stage in the transition to 100% renewable energy, there are more energy sector jobs. The IEA predicts the number of jobs falling after 2020. The Energy [R]evolution sees them increasing, by nearly 20 million between now and 2030, because of strong growth and investment in renewables
  • Solar PV will provide 9.7 million jobs, equal to the number of people working in the coal industry today. Jobs in wind power will grow to over 7.8 million, which is twice as many as are employed in oil and gas today
  • There is a just transition, not an overnight change. There will be 2 million people still working in the coal industry in 2030, so there is time to re-train
  • The costs are huge, but the savings are even bigger.
  • The investment costs for the switch to 100% renewables by 2050 is about US $1 trillion a year. But because renewable energies don’t need fuel, the average fuel cost savings are US $1.07 trillion a year. So the investment over the period is met in full by fuel cost savings, with the cross- over happening between 2025 and 2030.
  • There is growing support for 100% renewables
  • More scientists, engineers and activists support the view that 100% renewable energy is not only achievable, but also essential.
  • At local government and business level, there is a growing commitment to renewables. 164 countries around the world have targets for renewable electricity, and some cities have committed to 100% renewables – most recently Fukushima in Japan, and Maui County, Hawaii. On Monday Sept 21st, we expect New York City to announce it will move to 100% renewables.
  • The transformation to 100% renewables needs to start with a strong agreement in Paris
  • There are no major economic or technical barriers to moving towards 100% renewable energy by 2050. It just requires the political will to make the change.

Greenpeace has been publishing its Energy [R]evolution scenarios since 2005, more recently in collaboration with the scientific community, in particular the German Aerospace Centre (DLr). While our predictions on the potential and market growth of renewable energy may once have seemed fanciful or unrealistic, they have proved to be accurate. the US-based Meister Consultants Group concluded earlier this year that “the world’s biggest energy agencies, financial institutions and fossil fuel companies for the most part seriously under-estimated just how fast the clean power sector could and would grow”. It wasn’t the IEA, Goldman Sachs or the US Department of Energy who got it right. It was Greenpeace’s market scenario which was the most accurate.

Greenpeace: Energy Revolution 2015 Full Report

Greenpeace: Energy Revolution 2015 Executive Summary

Greenpeace: Energy Revolution 2015 Key Messages

Michellina Van Loder is a Professional Writer, Journalist and Blogger. This is where she shares her tales about trail blazing her way out of the Labyrinth of Chemical Sensitivities and Mould. This is also where you will find the latest Research on related topics.

Lisa Neville: Please Help Stop Wood-smoke Impacting on My Already Inflamed Airways

Dear, Lisa Neville, Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Water

Each winter, my health is impacted on by my neighbours’ wood-smoke from their wood heaters. Not only does the woodsmoke make me ill for days at a time but it also makes my life and that of my family’s difficult: we have to seal our windows with masking tape to keep the smoke out; we can’t run the exhausts fans in the bathroom unless someone outside the bathroom can tape up and seal cracks around the door due to the backdraft of woodsmoke that comes in; some nights, I have to sleep with a 3M filter mask over my face to protect my airways; we can’t leave our washing outside, nor can we go outside for long—most days, I can’t go outside at all—because the wood-smoke particles permeate into our hair and clothing, effecting my airways when we come in.
It’s not the sharp acrid smell that is the problem; rather, it’s the chemicals in the wood-smoke.
Many of which are proven to be chemical irritants that harm people with asthma, immune disorders and lung issues. My doctor, Immunologist and Allergist, Dr Colin Little, has tested and found me to be chemically sensitive to the irritants in wood-smoke. It’s like an allergy, however, the mechanisms are different. My only defence against the response my immune system has to woodsmoke is to avoid it. I can’t. And this winter it is making me feel miserable and insignificant — on top of the wood-smoke impacting on my health!
I have moved house, once because of neighbours’ wood-smoke, and I’ve changed my whole lifestyle just to try and manage my condition. Woodsmoke is not the only chemical irritant I have to manage, or try to avoid, but it is the only one that makes its way into my home without consent. I cannot describe how painful it is to wake in the night with no tears, saliva or mucus, due to neighbour’s lighting up nearby, and realising that I forgot to seal around the windows, and knowing I will suffer in pain for the next few days because of it. My airways, sting and burn and it hurts to breathe when wood-smoke is in the air; and due to this inflammation of my airways, the headaches and sinus pain that follow, my life must be put on hold until I recover.
This year, I’ve been ill for most of winter already due to wood-smoke in the air.
We are trying to build a new home that is allergy-free for me, however, if someone builds next door, installing a new wood heater, I’ll have no clean air to breathe, once again. I can’t ask them not to burn wood, allowing PM2.5 particles into the air. I can’t complain to council because unless the neighbour is burning incorrectly then they are in their complete right to do so. My health will continue to suffer greatly if this happens; and this time, I won’t be able to up and move again.
I find it difficult to understand in this age of human evolution how people with health conditions are allowed to suffer under the barbaric practice of burning wood for heat.
There are children with asthma who can’t speak for themselves: Minister, you need to be their voice. Our voice. Please.
Please support stricter air pollution standards and save $18 billion in health costs by implementing 3 measures to solve wood heater pollution at the 15 July meeting, improving our health and saving many lives per year.
The vast majority of respondents to the government consultation wanted an annual PM2.5 limit of 6 ug/m3.  This standard is achievable, if the 3 wood heater pollution measures are implemented, and would save the lives of about 700 Australians every year.
Please, as our elected representative, make public health your priority.  Please support the annual PM2.5 standard of 6 ug/m3 and allow it to protect large and small communities by requiring PM2.5 to be measured in all communities with more than 5,000 inhabitants if there is evidence (e.g. from optical particle counters) that the standard is likely to be exceeded.
A 6 ug/m3 PM2.5 standard can be achieved if we fix the wood heater pollution problem.  Emissions limits for other sources of pollution (e.g. cars) are set by the government.  The same should apply to domestic wood heaters. The Committee that set current ‘standards’ had no health experts and was powerless to make any real improvements because the wood-heating industry is allowed to veto any proposed changes.

As might be expected from such a flawed process, the current wood heater test doesn’t measure real-life emissions  The average new wood heater (that meets the current flawed ‘standard’) emits more PM2.5 per year than 1,000 petrol cars and has estimated health costs of thousands of dollars per year.  This meaningless ‘standard’ should be withdrawn immediately and a task force set up to develop a replacement test that measures real-life emissions and to set an appropriate emissions limit that will safeguard public health.Despite being used in Sydney as the main form of heating by less than 5% of households, the NSW EPA estimates that domestic wood heaters are responsible for more than half of all Sydney’s PM2.5 emissions over the entire year. A consultancy report for the NSW EPA estimated that woodsmoke is an $8.1 health problems in NSW, but that 3 simple measures

1) not allowing new wood heaters to be installed (until a new health-based wood-heater standard has been developed)
2) phasing out wood heaters when houses are sold
3) licencing fees to fund education programs, assist residents whose health or lifestyle is affected by other people’s woodsmoke and provide funds to replace wood stoves with non-polluting alternatives
could not only reduce the $8 billion health costs in NSW ($20-$24 billion for the whole of Australia) by at least 75% but also allow the 6 ug/m3 PM2.5 standard (that would save about 700 lives per year) to be achieved.
Please therefore support a 6 ug/m3 PM2.5 standard and the 3 measures listed above that will together reduce health costs in Australia by almost $20 billion and save 700 lives per year.
To verify the above facts, please see
Thanks you for your efforts which will ensure a cleaner, healthier future for all Australians.
Michellina van Loder
Professional Writer, Author, Journalist, Blogger
and PW&E Student @ Victoria University
Author of Build an Allergy-free, Eco-Friendly House
Labyrinth eBook, Web and Literary Services
B:  The Labyrinth ~ and finding my way out
Airquality Australia

The Lung Foundation Australia: Woodsmoke Harms Your Lungs

Asthma Australia: Woodfire Heaters

Michellina Van Loder is a Professional Writer, Journalist and Blogger. This is where she shares her tales about trail blazing her way out of the Labyrinth of Chemical Sensitivities and Mould. This is also where you will find the latest Research on related topics.

Help: (3 Days left) to Stop New Wood Heaters Emitting More Pollution

I recently signed this petition: Stop new wood heaters emitting more pollution in a few hours than the average car in an entire year. It was put together by the good, hardworking and much appreciated people at Airquality Australia. Along with the Lung Foundation Australia, Asthma Australia and many other Australians, they care about peoples’ health. You, too, can help AirQuality Australia clear the air:

Dear Friends,

Thanks very much for signing the petition: Stop new wood heaters emitting more pollution in a few hours than the average car in an entire year.

A copy of the petition has been emailed to all environment ministers – they meet next week (15 Jul) to discuss wood heater pollution.

Sadly, very few people understand that the Committee that set current wood heater ‘standards’ had no health experts and was powerless to make any real improvements because the wood heating industry is allowed to veto any proposed changes.

A member of that Committee, the Clean Air Society of Aust/NZ, considers the new ‘standard’ so appalling it recently recommended to the NSW Government that “action to ban domestic solid fuel burning for domestic heating should be seriously considered“.

NSW Chief Medical Officer Kerry Chant said wood heaters are so detrimental to health she supports banning and phasing them out in built-up urban areas.

The NSW Asthma Foundation warned that: wood smoke emissions in winter pose a bigger health danger in built up urban areas than cars or cigarettes.

Australian Lung Foundation spokesman Dr James Markos said wood fire heaters should be banned from urban areas. He said real-life emissions from new wood-heaters have little relationship to measurements from a perfectly operated test model under laboratory conditions.

The UN Environment Program/World Meteorological Organization recommended phasing out log-burning heaters in developed countries to reduce the risk of dangerous climate change as well as improve health. 56% of submissions to the Commonwealth Government’s Woodheater Consultation Regulation Impact Statement supported either a ban on all wood heaters, or not allowing new ones to be installed.

A good example of the mis-information from the wood heating industry is yesterday’s ABC radio interview with a wood heading industry lobbyist.

Ministers are likely to be fooled by lobbying from this profit-driven industry.  If you haven’t done so already, please contact your state environment minister (details below and at to point out that the current ‘standards’ were set by the wood heating industry and provide little or no protection to nearby residents.

This meaningless ‘standard’ should be withdrawn immediately and a task force set up to develop a replacement test that measures real-life emissions and to set an appropriate emissions limit that will safeguard public health.

Thanks very much for your support.

Airquality Australia

Contact details for environment ministers
Federal  (02) 6277 7920
NSW   Mark Speakman (02) 8574 6390
Vic 03 9637 9654
SA  Ian Hunter MLC 08 84 63 5680
Qld  (07) 3719 7330
WA  Ph: 6552 5800  Albert Jacob
Tas Premier & Environment (03) 6165 7724  –
ACT Health & Environment minister: Corbell , Simon  (02) 6205 0000

Draft email you could use:

PS. Please encourage everyone who cares about the current damage from unhealthy air pollution to sign the petition, if they haven’t done so already.


Airquality Australia: Health Facts and Statistics Surrounding Wood-smoke and Health

The Lung Foundation Australia: Woodsmoke Harms Your Lungs

Asthma Australia: Woodfire Heaters

Finding my Way Out of The Labyrinth: My Plea to Lisa Neville, Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Water, to Help Stop Wood-smoke Impacting on the Health of Myself and Others Who Suffer Medical Diseases and Conditions Exacerbated by Inhaling Wood-smoke

STOP WOOD-SMOKE: Draft Letter You (Too!) Can Use

And, Finally, Sign Here: Stop New Wood Heaters Emitting More Pollution in a Few Hours Than the Average Car in an Entire Year

Michellina Van Loder is a Professional Writer, Journalist and Blogger. This is where she shares her tales about trail blazing her way out of the Labyrinth of Chemical Sensitivities and Mould. This is also where you will find the latest Research on related topics.

Information, products and views presented by guest bloggers @The Labyrinth are not necessarily the same as those held by this blog's author, Michellina van Loder. Reviews are my own personal opinions (unless stated otherwise); and satire is used throughout personal posts. Any health topics discussed are not to be taken as medical advice. Seek out medical attention if needed and do your own research; however, you're welcome to use mine as a start.
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