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Global warming, the role of renewable energy and the case for modernising cooking
conference contributionposted on 30.11.2020, 09:51 by Richard Blanchard
The scientific evidence makes is clear that the world is getting warmer because of human activity. The economic model for growth and development without considering the consequences has put the world on course for warming by 3-4oC by the end of this century. This will lead to changes in climate, floods, droughts, species extinction and mass human migration. However, there is still a window of opportunity to redress the balance and mitigate against the worst-case scenarios for the future. Renewable energy over the past 30 years has become mainstream in a number of technologies and the economics have improved to make wind and solar cheaper than conventional fuels. The growth has also led to innovations in energy storage. But still today, around 800 million people around the world do not have access to electricity. Furthermore, 3 billion people still cook using wood or charcoal which contributes to emissions of carbon-dioxide and particulates. This also leads to continued deforestation with knock on effects of increased flood risk and damage to soils.
In this paper a review of global warming is made presenting scientific evidence for the effects on the Earth’s environment. Furthermore, the role renewable energy can play in meeting energy demand is argued in the context of the challenge to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050. A case is then made to tackle an area of energy use that appears not to get the priority for development that Sustainable Development Goal 7, universal access to modern energy services, targets. This is the task of modernising energy cooking services in areas without access to electricity or where grid electricity is not reliable. The research undertaken examines the challenges both social and technical and proposes solutions that will transform cooking practices to reduce the burden on key stakeholders.
UK Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office grant IATI Identifier: GB-GOV-1-300123: Modernising Energy Cooking Services
- Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering