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Climate Change and Renewable Energy Options Essay

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Updated: Apr 3rd, 2019


There is a lack of access to energy in most of the world states. This has for quite a long time been the problem to economic development in these world countries. Statistics show that only 31 percent of the Sub-Saharan countries use electricity, with only 10 percent in the rural areas.

Besides the energy access challenges, the “traditional biomass” only supplies 85percent of the energy and only 80percent is used in some Asian countries1. With lack of energy access becoming a major concern in the world, there has been concern for the development of required energy security and coming up with ways to supply the energy.

The need to adapt to change in climate has been another challenge for sustainable development in the world. Research shows that Asia contributes about 5percent of the “global GHG emissions” but this is however tampered by variations in climate change such as food security, water supply, biodiversity, and diseases brought about by climate2.

These challenges of energy and climate change are related and therefore there is concern on the methods which society uses to produce energy, distribute and consume it. Policies related to attain the energy goals through “sustainable” means and through methods that do not consume more carbon are important.

Coming up with renewable energy policies and implementing them can be of great help in access to “clean” energy3. Methods of energy production such as coal and fossil emit more carbon other methods such as hydro, bio-energy, wind, PV technology, and solar thermal offer the most available options.

The energy and climate policy makers should put more emphasis on doing away with the challenges to renewable energy development through methods such as the ones above. Other methods such as “net metering”, “feed-in tariff”, and “renewable energy portfolio” are put forward to promote less carbon energy consumption ways4.

Therefore with more concern in the world on sustainable development, there is need to develop the energy sector and putting more emphasis on renewable energy. Moreover, the policy makers need to know that the relationship between energy security and climate change and methods that are aimed at producing less carbon vital.

Key Drivers of Climate Change

Most of the problems experienced in climate change are largely as a result of what happens outside the “sector”5. Factors such as the increase in population, the increase in the human beings’ purchasing power and increase in international trade are putting more pressure on forests.

The rise on road networking development has acted as a way to attract more investors in agricultural development and bringing into place new trends in the rural area economic developments. The high demand of forest products and the need for investment in new species of plants have changed the natural sceneries in the rural areas and the general landscape.

The rise in deforestation has been accelerated by low wages among the world population, rich soils that encourage other forms of agriculture, and the rise in agricultural prices that encourage people to do away with forests in favour of crops. There is however a need for good governance and clear policies regarding land tenure as these has eased the problem of climate change.

However, research shows that even in areas where there is good governance and good policies regarding forestation, the problem of tree cutting in favour of other forms of agriculture has been on the rise.

The existence of various classes of world economies in the rural setting and the rise of the middle class economies has put more pressure on environmental services that are highly demanded and the use of forests. In curbing the current trends, the institutions that are concerned with development are playing important roles in such climate change situations.

Since policies are often led by “hidden hands” that have seen the rise on the call “economic and social” justice proper allocation of land and creating other forms of employment that can remove the pressure on forests that are as a result of the low income of the world population6. This kind of effect can be helpful than the direct efforts to deal with such problem.

The culture of a society also affects the way forests are treated by its people. Changes in the culture of the societies have been beneficial in the rural developments and brought more changes in forestry. They have been interacting with other communities such as the organizations, environmental NGO’s, the governments and other private sectors in encouraging environmental awareness.

Demographic Changes

There is an increase in the rate of rural to urban migration in recent years due to high level of socioeconomic development, and this has brought about industrialization. However, more people are now employed in the urban towns that make them more

Stable and avoid a lot of tree cutting in the rural areas. The rate of population growth in urban areas is expected to rise and this will put more pressure on forests.

Rural depopulation is likely to affect climate change in various ways because of the increase in economic “downturn”. Even though most of the people are leaving for the urban centres, there are those that have remained and are low income earners that may be forced to cut down the resources.

Moreover, lack of efficient land-tenure systems in the rural areas may motivate the people to cut down the forests. Changes in agriculture due to increase in technology that have paved way for large scale commercial agriculture may lead to clearance of forests and increase of population around the agricultural areas may imply that there would be more clearing of forests.

The consequences of climate change as a result of the rural population growth will be dependent on the rural development policy and the form of governance in existence. In cases where there are no proper policies and poor governance, there is the possibility that there will be more clearance of the forest resources. However, there have been cases where high populations have been motivated to invest in forest resources.

Nevertheless, factors such as population growth, local migration and the rise of urbanization, and “out migration” have eased rural development changes. These factors have acted in a way that it is easy to manage forests in the rural areas since the pressure on land is reduced being used for agriculture is reduced.


Climate change has become a serious problem in the world today. Even though most countries shall focus on reducing emissions and putting more emphasis on mitigation efforts, there have been more climate change scenarios that are as a result of human beings. There have been concerns in reducing the “greenhouse” gas emissions, and several strategies are in place to help in dealing with the problem of climate change.

Addressing the problem of Conversion of forests to other land uses

Most countries are now dealing with the problem of conversion of most of their land to other agricultural uses. Most people have for long been forced to clear forests in favour of agricultural use because of the economic crisis.

There have been measures in place to control this problem and the countries have emphasized and encouraged her citizens that even though achieving food and energy security might be a major concern for most of the people, it is important for the people to know that investing in forests is as important too.

This has however, forced many countries to adopt an “integrated” landscape approach in expecting their policies. This ensure that the use of land should not only be for agricultural purposes but considering other values such as the value of other goods and services that come as a result of forest and tree conservation. Clearly, one of the main reasons for forest conversion to agricultural use is for “bio-fuels”. Some governments provide incentives that are adequate to the farmers and this has reduced the problem of conversion of land forests into agricultural purposes.

Various National Forest Monitoring Systems

The Food Agricultural Organization has put in place a system that monitors, collects, analyses and gives a comprehensive report on the uses of forests in the member countries. This is aimed at managing forests in the most efficient manner. This system is important since it can assess the status of the forests over a period of time so that the organization can know on the way forward regarding the sustainable management of the forests.

The statistics provided by this system is vital in knowing how important the forests are to the particular country and their contribution to the countries in achieving their goals and coming up with the required “climate change adoption strategies”7.

Alleviating Poverty as proposed by REDD

This organization emphasizes on the need to reduce poverty in the world states, improving the leadership in regard to forest conservation, conserving “biodiversity” and the need to provide other services related to the environment. The rate of clearing trees has been on the rise because of the poor economy where people are aiming at using the forest land for agricultural purposes instead of investing in trees for future use which do not seem to come.

The organization has encouraged governments that should they control poverty, then the rate of tree clearance shall be minimal. The organization moreover, delivers low emission costs for products at a short time. Therefore in sustainable development the organization has encouraged the countries to be aware that this should start from controlling the way people are living in terms of their economic status.

Stressing on the Importance of Forests

Forests are important just like investing in the agricultural sector. Some countries are involved in monitoring and care for the forests, have come up with policies that are aimed at rewarding the conservation bodies. There are organizations in various countries that monitor the forests to ensure that are in good health and to see if there is any harm by pets and other diseases. Moreover, countries have ways to implement fire control measures. This ensure that the forests are not tampered with at any point.

Several measures related to forest can be understood through “SFM” and the measures insist on the importance of curbing climate change. The measures that are also provided by REDD help in monitoring the forests. Monitoring of forests ensures that the required “interventions” are put in place for the safety of the forests.

Low Carbon Growth

Increased pressure in the Atmosphere

The issue of carbon dioxide cut makes it a problem for the upper atmosphere to “absorb” the greenhouse gases. This is a problem since it cannot be possible to absorb the greenhouse gases without tampering with the ecosystem. The ecosystem is essential for the health of all the human beings and their “welfare”8.

Even though the use of technology has enabled human beings to get the resources in the most efficient manner, through the emissions from the greenhouses into the atmosphere but the same technology has not provided the best way to clean up such gases in the atmosphere.

The use of natural resources is becoming a major problem in the world and more over the increase of the greenhouse gases because of low carbon dioxide emissions has affected the ecosystem greatly and puts the human life in danger.

Energy Conservation Options and Renewable Energy

Changing to the renewable energy as an alternative to more efficient energy use is vital. This increases energy efficiency for most industries. Nevertheless, the concept of “source conversion” is important. This concept involves using other sources of fossil fuel consumption that do not pollute the environment and are more cost effective. Moreover, the idea of bio-mass that uses the “agricultural” waste products and wood chips is becoming important and tries to protect the environment9.

Energy conservation is an expensive task and therefore encouraging human beings to use electricity in the most efficient manner is important. The concept of turning off lighting systems when they are not needed helps conserve energy. Technology has been on the forefront in addressing the problem of energy conservation and help to deliver the most cost effective energy.

The wood chips that come from the process of making timber can be used as a source of energy. Other sources such as cow manure can be important in replacing the fossil fuel. Using local resources such as wind, sun, and river flow most organizations can turn away from the use of fossil fuel that is more costly and adds the problem of environmental pollution.

To conserve energy, there are a variety of bio-fuels such as corn, soy diesel, dairy methane, wood chips that have taken the place of gasoline and diesel fuel and are being used in operating vehicles and “heating oil” that is fundament to the vehicle’s equipment operation. Clearly, bio-fuels have an added advantage of not only polluting the environment but also consume less energy.

These give the farmers and the foresters an advantage of using a cost-effective product for their routine jobs while being assured of a profit for their daily operation. Through this, they help in improving their lifestyle that further improves the national economy and eradicating the problem of climate change.

Renewable energy cannot be exhausted at any point in the process of the human development cycle. These resources further are long lasting and can be “regenerated” through agricultural practices. Moreover, they are environmental friendly, and help in controlling climate change by reducing carbon emissions into the environment.

Emissions Trading Scheme

The emissions trading scheme is not working at the moment because this is not a real market scenario. The system failed in the first phase because the member states had to allocate the “auctioning” rights free of charge to companies10. Most of the companies that took more permits than they needed sold them for a profit instead. However, this system can be made to work as the objective of this system is to “impose” a given amount of cost on those companies that emit carbon that is enough to invest in new technologies.

A stronger commission is needed for the system to work because of the need for low pollution and this should be shown by giving permits to only a small number of companies. This system is still the most widely renowned system that is considered cost-effective by economists and the best way to do away with greenhouse emissions.

Since many companies have objected to the trading schemes is a demonstration that this is the best way to achieve the low carbon economy. The current problems associated with this system are such they can be “reformed” and the problems that are coming up make the system to realize its flaws.


The current system is made in a way that there are no “auctioning”. If the permits are given to companies and not auctioned then the system cannot be of any importance. The system needs to be reformed in a way that all the permits are auctioned in the process. Nevertheless, at the moment there are “small installations” in the system. This show that the cost of including such installations could be more costly and make the benefits less. The system needs to be reformed by increasing the “threshold” of such installations11.

It is vital for the policy makers to get the exact price allocation since the current economic situation is dynamic. Therefore making several assumptions about the future economic growth would be vital, the future price changes, and the ever dynamic technology over several years would make the system realize its goals.

At the moment, the trading system does not cover the big industries involved in the production of chemicals, aluminium and minerals, coal, natural gas leaks and the system need to be reformed to cover all the economies that it does not cover at the moment. Some sections of the economy such as the household sector, the transportation sector, agriculture are not all covered by the system and this makes it not realize its goals.

Unlike some of the alternative policies in reducing emissions, the system would be in a serious problem if the price of carbon was traded at a certain level. This is because most companies can opt to trade outside the EU and in the process avoid the system and this would make the system not attain its goal. The System needs to cover such problem.


With the world seeking ways in which it can handle the energy challenges and dealing with the problem of climate change, technology has been important in offering the alternatives.

Clear guidelines on the climate change should be in place for policy makers in the process of enabling the world have access to energy in a cost effective manner and dealing with the problem of climate change. Therefore having clear targets regarding energy development and managing the environment will be important for the future. Renewable energies offer the best solution for energy conservation.

The governments also need to design and make sure that the renewable energy development strategies are followed. It is however, clear that most emissions have a direct relationship with energy generation and consumption more so in households and transportation sectors that have not been considered in trying to deal with this problem.

Generally, to reduce the emissions it calls for having standards that define given levels of emission that encourage “cleaner” energy supply from the renewable sources12. This would be an important policy especially in African countries.

The technological standards are the ones that have been relied relatively to control emissions from the transport sector. This would include increasing the vehicle “mileage” and in the types of fuels. Therefore other environmental policies in place then the problem of climate change would be a problem of the past13.


Deisendorf, M, “Greenhouse Solutions”: Sustainable Energy, NY, UNSW Press, 2007

Diesendorf, M, Sustainable Energy Futures for Australia in Greenhouse Solutions with Sustainable Energy, UNSW Press, NY, 2007.

Diesendorf, M, Greenhouse response in the Energy Sector, NY, Unwin Publishers, 1997.

Dow, K. & T Downing, “The Atlas of Climate Change”: Mapping the World’s Greatest Challenge, Earthscan, UK, 2006.

Flannery, T, “The Weather Makers”: The history & future impact of climate change, Chicago, The Text Publishing, 2005.

Flannery, T, The Weather Makers, Text Publishing: Melb, 2005 pp. 189-202

Gilchrist, G, “The Big Switch”: Clean Energy for the 21st Century Allen & Unwin Publishers, 1991.

Hawken, P., & A Lovins, “Natural Capitalism”: The Next Industrial Revolution, UK, Earthscan, 1999.

Hempel, L, “Environmental Governance”: The Global Challenge, Island Press, USA, 1996.

King, D. & G Walker, “It’s the Economy, Stupid in the Hot Topic”: How to tackle global Warming and still keep the lights on, Bloomsbury Publishing UK, 2008

Leggett, J, “Half Gone”: Oil, Gas, Hot Air and the Global Energy Crisis, Portobello Books, UK, 2003.

Lenssen N, Providing Energy in Developing Countries in State of the World, World watch Institute, USA, 1993.

Lovejoy, T & L Hannah, Climate Change and Biodiversity, Yale University Press, US 2005.

Lovejoy, T & L Hannah, Climate Change and Biodiversity, Yale University Press, Yale, 2005.

Lovelock, J,The Revenge of Gaia, Allen Lane: UK. 2006.


1.T Flannery, The Weather Makers, Text Publishing, Melb, 2005.

2. D King, & G Walker, It’s the Economy, Stupid’ in The Hot Topic: How to tackle global

Warming and still keep the lights on, UK; Bloomsbury Publishing, 2008.

3. Ibid.

4. M Diesendorf, Sustainable Energy Futures for Australia‟ in Greenhouse Solutions with

Sustainable Energy, UNSW Press, NY, 2007.

5. Ibid

6. Ibid.,

7. G Gilchrist, The Big Switch: Clean Energy for the 21st Century, Allen & Unwin Publishers, NY, 1991.

8. P Hawke, & A Lovins, Natural Capitalism: The Next Industrial Revolution, Earthscan, UK, 1999.

9. L Hempel, Environmental Governance: The Global Challenge, Island Press, USA, 1996.

10. J Lovelock, The Revenge of Gaia, Allen Lane, UK, 2006.

11. J Leggett, Half Gone: Oil, Gas, Hot Air and the Global Energy Crisis, Portebello Books, UK, 2003.

12. Ibid.,

13. Ibid.,

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