Mark it down in the diaries, folks... Provided the world doesn't come to a cataclysmic end next year, the UN believes that humankind can get 80 per cent of its energy from renewable sources by the year 2050.
The UN panel on Climate Change has issued a report on the state of renewable energy and found that the renewable energy sources like solar, wind, geothermal and hydropower could supply four fifths of the worlds energy demand by half way through this century, compared to the 13 per cent it accounts for today.
The catch - and it's a big one - is that it's going to be expensive. Very expensive. To reach that kind of pervasive level of green energy, it's going to take at least $US5.1 trillion between now and 2020, and a further $7.2 trillion from 2020 to 2030, from both private and public funds.
But the biggest hurdle is that the mandate for change isn't going to come through dollars alone, but also government policies driving green technology forward. And if we've learnt anything about government environmental policies in recent months, it's that you can't rely on politicians for anything...
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