Natural Gas
Global Warming
Statement by Margot Wallström, European Commissioner for the Environment, at Renewables 2004 [2004 June]
"I believe that renewable energy is the future but it is up to us all, political leaders, business and, of course, consumers – to reach out and seize the benefits renewables can bring.

"I would like to put 3 messages to you:

  • The future of renewables depends on our political will and our capacity to be forward-looking.
  • Renewables are a winning concept - they promote economic growth, employment and the improvement of the environment.
  • We have to act together – solidarity with the developing world is of crucial importance."

Ten Steps to a Sustainable Energy Future by Rudolf Rechsteiner, Dr. rer. pol., Member of the Swiss Parliament [ ]

"As an economist focusing on energy and environment, I would like to give you some indications, what shape a sustainable energy future could have in the next coming years, why the future I project is a sound economic choice and what extraordinary challenges are ahead. The roles of hydrogen, oil, gas, coal and nuclear are reflected as these are the favorite choices of transnational companies and electricity monopolies."

Oil & Gas at a threshold –- soon too expensive for many -- a slideshow by Rudolf Rechsteiner at Renewables 2004 [2004 June]

Sustainable Development and OPEC by Herman E. Daly, School of Public Affairs, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20782, USA, Invited paper for the conference, “OPEC and the Global Energy Balance: Towards a Sustainable Energy Future”, Vienna, Austria [2001 September]

"In Part I the meaning of sustainable development, along with basic arguments for its desirability and long-term necessity, are considered. The economy is viewed in its physical dimensions as an open subsystem of a containing ecosystem that is finite, nongrowing, and materially closed. The ecosystem is open with respect to solar energy, but the solar flux is also finite and non growing. Sustainable development of the economy means qualitative improvement (development), without quantitative increase in matter-energy throughput (growth) beyond the absorptive and regenerative capacities of the sustaining ecosystem. Growth in physical throughput will become uneconomic long before it becomes physically impossible, in the sense that the extra environmental costs provoked by growth will be greater than the extra production benefits provided by growth. In sum, the economy has an optimal scale relative to the environment. Growth beyond the optimal scale is in reality uneconomic growth, even if we continue to call it economic growth. The idea of sustainable development is to avoid uneconomic growth, and to move the path of progress from quantitative expansion to qualitative improvement.

"Part II speculates about how OPEC might take a leading role in developing a global policy and fiduciary institutional framework in the service of sustainable development. The failure of Kyoto and the inability of high consuming countries, especially the US, to limit their energy throughput, opens an opportunity for OPEC to provide the missing discipline. OPEC could serve many of the functions of Kyoto by using its monopoly power over the petroleum source to collect a surcharge reflecting atmospheric sink scarcity. The sink rent surcharge would go into a special fund to be redistributed as aid to poor countries to finance sustainable development projects and technologies. Petroleum source rents would continue to belong to producing countres who own the petroleum deposits. Since no one owns the atmosphere its sink rents would be global public revenue, collected and redistributed by OPEC as a fiduciary, perhaps with UN participation."

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