The Green Energy Transition: Anticipating a Coal-Free World by 2050
A world no longer dependent on coal will soon be a reality. Germany is one country with a plan in place to make it possible. It plans to phase out all coal-fired power plants in a portion of the country by 2030. Many other countries have plans in place to achieve a coal-free world by 2050. To achieve either of these goals, significant investments must be made and technological progress must accelerate.
The Technologies Poised to Change Power Use
The World Energy Transition Outlook 2022: 1.5 C Pathway report released by the International Renewable Energy Agency identifies six specific industries at the forefront of making a coal-free world possible:
- Renewable energy
- Energy efficiency
- Hydrogen use
- Carbon capture and storage of fossil fuels
A focus specifically on energy efficiency, electrification, and renewable energy use shows promise. These three areas will account for 70% of the total carbon reductions needed to reach coal-free goals. Every country, then, must find a way to support the development and growth of these technologies. There’s plenty of reasons for this to happen, too.
- Renewable energy is affordable. In many parts of the world, it is already cheaper to build a new solar plant than to keep existing coal plants operational.
- Burning coal produces many pollutants that degrade air quality and increase the likelihood of developing lung cancer and asthma. Renewables, on the other hand, are pollution-free.
- Renewables can be important for national security reasons. Countries that produce their own energy domestically are less vulnerable to market volatility and international politics. For example, the Russia-Ukraine war has exposed a vulnerability in Europe’s energy system, which is dependent on Russian natural gas. Europe is now investing heavily in renewables to increase its energy security.
What Needs to Happen Moving Forward
Though a coal-free world by 2050 is possible, there are major steps that nations need to take to make that happen, including:
- Investing in developing countries with rapidly growing populations, such as India and Nigeria, to help them go green as quickly as possible.
- Refurbishing, improving, and modernizing existing centralized power grids to create a green method for providing power to communities at scale.
- Accelerating the retirement of existing coal plants and ceasing the planning and construction of new ones.
While many countries’ energy systems are becoming greener, the pace is too slow and needs to be accelerated if the world is to meet these goals. The good news is that companies are paying attention, and that’s going to make a big difference. With effort, education, and promotion of green technology, change is possible.
Sunon Is a Leader in the Green Energy Transition
Sunon offers cooling solutions that support the technologies necessary to achieve a coal-free world. In addition, our energy efficiency improvements ensure that our products use less energy than ever before. Using less energy is just as important as switching to green energy.
Sunon is an innovation-driven, quality-oriented company. As a total thermal solution provider in many industries, we are creating the equipment that’s powering a green future. Our mission is to reduce energy usage and carbon emissions to protect the environment. Contact us today to learn more about the technologies we are developing to lead our planet into a better future.