The economic success story of industrialized nations is based on the use of coal, oil and natural gas. Considering the ambiguous side effects such as environmental damage and climate change, countries are now struggling with the transition to renewable energy sources. The regions with the highest emissions – North America, Europe and China – are more or less bound to operate in a climate-neutral manner from the middle of the millennium.
But what about developing countries? Should they first capture the Industrial Revolution and follow the path of fossil energy and then switch to solar, wind and hydropower? Or can you significantly improve your quality of life with the help of regenerative resources, avoiding the climate-damaging phase?
The performance achieved by photovoltaics and wind power plants over the past decade, as well as the greater availability of sun and wind in the tropics speak for the elegant skipping of the fossil economy, which is known as the leap in the professional world. Using the example of Africa, researchers have now calculated flow opportunities and barriers based on comprehensive data sets.
Galina Alova, an environmental economist at the University of Oxford, and her colleague Philip Trotter, along with Reinich-Westfellich Technich Hotsley Achen, developed a plan that could create future scenarios from information about current and planned power plants. Instructions are capable of machine learning; They are trained based on historical events aimed at target points in the past, and compare these scenes to the situation that occurred later. In this way, the program eventually learns To provide well-established predictions about the future energy development of Africa.
Since the researchers insist on the data collected for the first time in such a complete way, the initial situation is not conducive to leaps and bounds. About 80 percent of Africa’s electricity is currently generated from fossil fuels. Thus the continent is increasingly contributing to global CO2-Emission – and in relation to the strong growth of the population and the economy, threatens that it will get worse in the coming decades if not reversed. At present, wind turbines do not play a role. Solar systems are being built everywhere, but only contribute a small percentage to the energy mix.
what to do? Aloe and Trotter point to great uncertainty in planning power generation, especially in Africa; They therefore suggest that currently intended thermal power plants should not be built first and should instead rely on renewable energies. The resolution for this diversion will be, on the one hand, targeted funds from international development assistance and, on the other hand, the fixed funding of the respective government.