TECH

Humanity Could Give Up Fossil Fuels In 10 Years If It Wanted To

Wait, what?

18/04/2016 12:31
Kami Kami via Getty Images

Humanity could, if it wanted to, ditch fossil fuels in just a decade according to a new study by the University of Sussex.

This bold claim comes courtesy of Professor Benjamin Sovacool who believes the scarcity of resources, our fears over climate change and some vast technological advances could all contribute to a global energy revolution.

Professor Sovacool who is director of the Sussex Energy Group believes that by looking at our past we can often become clouded by our past mistakes.

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While it took us nearly 70 years to introduce electricity into the mainstream these examples often only look at the global attempt to introduce a new technology.

Instead Professor Sovacool looked at more specific examples, where individual countries had set themselves an ambitious target and then succeeded.

One such example was when France decided to launch its nuclear power programme which saw its energy production sky rocket from four per cent to forty in the space of just 12 years.

“The mainstream view of energy transitions as long, protracted affairs, often taking decades or centuries to occur, is not always supported by the evidence.

 “Moving to a new, cleaner energy system would require significant shifts in technology, political regulations, tariffs and pricing regimes, and the behaviour of users and adopters." explains Professor Sovacool.

In each of his examples a country had worked closely with consumers, regulators and energy providers with all of them coming together to work towards a common goal.

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If the world was able to accomplish something even close to this then the time it would take to switch over to alternative energy sources would be greatly reduced.

"We have learnt a sufficient amount from previous transitions that I believe future transformations can happen much more rapidly.” said Professor Sovacool.

We've already seen some specific examples of this switchover in the form of electric cars.

Tesla broke all of its records last month when over a quarter of a million people pre-ordered its new affordable Model 3 electric car.

Here in the UK another record was set regarding electric cars when the government revealed that so far in 2016 a new electric vehicle was being registered every 13 minutes.

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