The Russian war of aggression against Ukraine has made plain to us that the energy transition is about much more than climate action – it is also about our security, because fossil fuels make us dependent and vulnerable. That is why we need more renewable sources of energy, certainly to mitigate the climate crisis, but also to guarantee our independence, energy supply and long-term prosperity.
Energiewende – Securing a Green Future
The 9th Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue, which begins today at the Federal Foreign Office under the motto of Energiewende – Securing a Green Future, is all about how we can together accelerate the shift toward green energy and away from fossil fuels. Some 2000 visitors are engaging in discussions with representatives from more than 90 countries, the business community, international energy organisations and civil society. The main focus of these talks is how to move forward on ambitious solutions to expand the use of renewable sources of energy.
Among the participants is Kenya’s President William Ruto, who has declared the ambitious goal of attaining one hundred percent renewables for his country’s power supply by the year 2030. In doing so, his country is setting an example – not only in Africa, but around the world.
Foreign Minister Baerbock said the following during the opening ceremony of the 9th Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue:
The BETD conference is the global meeting place for those who want to utilise this opportunity or who are already taking the lead. The example of Kenya shows that a complete shift to renewables is possible. The global energy transition has to pick up the pace – both in the interest of the climate and of prosperity.
Accelerating the global energy transition
The climate crisis is the greatest challenge facing us in the 21st century. Even today, more than three billion people live in regions that are hugely threatened by climate change. At the same time, the climate crisis is exacerbating existing conflicts, due to resources becoming more and more scarce. The international community has therefore committed itself to limiting global warming to a maximum of 1.5 degrees, because this is the most that our planet can tolerate.
The newest report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has shown that we will only be able to keep the 1.5-degree target within reach if we halve global emissions by the year 2030. And we will only manage to do so if countries on all continents redouble their energy transition efforts. So the Federal Government is also supporting other countries to forge ahead with their respective energy transitions, thereby helping them attain their national climate targets. It should not be forgotten that the energy transition is a great economic opportunity, too.
On this topic, Foreign Minister Baerbock emphasised that:
The massive shift toward renewables is not only urgently needed in order to tackle the climate crisis, it also presents an enormous economic opportunity for the public and private sectors. The investments made today will decide who will take the lead in the new industrial revolution. Germany supports its partners all over the world in taking advantage of this opportunity. Countries that invest in green hydrogen today, for example, will be the potential winners of tomorrow.