Not quite, unfortunately. The story, as always, is more complicated than this. Sure, China is embracing the groundbreaking climate pact, and it’s building wind farms at a blistering rate, but it’s also not weaning itself off coal-fired power plants. India is in a similar position, with lawmakers there pointing out that coal is still cheaper than many alternatives.
The UK may be switching to more nuclear and renewable energy sources, but it’s also currently allowing plenty of fracking, a controversial and poorly understood process that generates earthquakes and unleashes climate-changing natural gas. Additionally, Scotland often claims to be a bastion of environmentalism, but it keeps investing money in the North Sea oil fields.
The British government has also cut funding for solar power installation recently, threatening to reduce its share of the national energy market.
“The role for solar is significantly expanding as we develop complementary energy storage technologies, but we need government support to continue to achieve its potential,” Court said.
Renewable energy alone cannot power all nations at the moment and provide them with adequate energy security. Nuclear energy, an extremely low-carbon and highly efficient energy source, is required to meet the challenges laid down by the Paris agreement. However, the overblown nature of the Fukushima incident in 2011 has sadly led many nations across the world to close down their nuclear power plants.
What is true is that we have the tools right now to completely change the way we derive energy. Examples like this show that solar and wind power are cheap and easy to attach to the grid. Nevertheless, if we are to truly stop ourselves from reaping the whirlwind, there’s a lot more that needs to be done.
Firstly, we need our governments to stop investing in fossil fuel extraction at the very same time they claim to have green credentials. Failing that, we need to stop politicians that think that climate change isn’t important – or doesn’t exist in the first place.