SAY NO TO OIL AND YES TO ALTERNATIVE ENERGY
With the New Year around the corner, we cannot accept that investment will be made into old technologies, after all so many of the solutions we need to move beyond oil already exist.
We wish that in 2014 we can begin the New Year by removing the barriers to the mass production of clean energy. We wish to see the Portuguese government cutting all subsidies for fossil fuels, banning deep water drilling for oil and gas and investing instead in green jobs as a route to a clean and prosperous future for all in Portugal.
We wish to see a change in our government and business leaders that will result in a turn-around from “Oil Business as Usual” in the way we consume and produce energy – we do not believe that what the Portuguese government and multi-nationals like Partex (Gulbenkian Foundation), Repsol, Petrobras, Mohave and Galp are planning to do in our waters from 2014 - it’s the correct option facing us.
The Oil industry wants the world to follow a path towards increasing oil consumption, vast environmental damage and global temperature rises that take us well beyond what’s safe for human life. This is happening worldwide and not just in Portugal. But it doesn’t have to be like this - instead of chasing the last drops of dirty oil and gas from our planet, we need to really kick-start the “Clean Energy Age”.
Portugal’s national interest will be far better served if we do not join others in the “addiction to oil”. Portugal will be far more secure economically and politically; insulated against oil price shocks and much better prepared to make the move to a cleaner, more prosperous and truly sustainable economy if we move Portugal towards becoming a global leader in clean technologies.
If Portugal is going to enter the energy race in 2014 why not do so by looking at how can they really contribute to a Zero Carbon system where pretty much all our energy needs are provided and powered by the sun, sea and wind - energy that won’t run out. In the meantime we need to start reducing the oil we use and reducing our carbon emissions.
But the biggest stumbling block is lack of political will in our leaders - we need a political system free from corruption, transparent as well as the appropriate investment to enable that to happen. We all need to work together to go beyond oil. We have only one planet, and if we’re going to protect it and ourselves, everyone - from local communities, to businesses and governments - will need to come together to make the switch from dirty oil to clean energy.
It’s time for the clean energy age to begin!
FACT: Portugal has a limitless supply of clean energy.
In a single day the sunlight that reaches the earth produces enough energy to satisfy the world’s current power requirements for eight years. Even though only a percentage of that potential is technically accessible, this is still enough to provide around six times more power than the world currently needs.
In the Algarve we enjoy over 300 days of sunlight, not to mention that we have an abundance of wind, wave and tidal power as well. We could, and should, be at the forefront of the global clean energy race – which means we could be reaping huge economic and employment benefits from developing renewable technologies.
Most importantly however, we have a choice!
We can either pursue an energy future that leaves us hooked on the climate wrecking fossil fuels of yesteryear and the inherent risks that they bring, or we can harness the abundance of clean energy potential that is currently being left to wither.
Surely we should be spending our hard earned money on investing in our clean future, rather than defending the dirty energies of the past?
And these my dear friends are our wishes for 2014.