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Clean energy can spark global conflicts
Technology

Clean energy can spark global conflicts 

What will the planet look like when oil is no longer the leading force in global geopolitics and clean energy takes its place? Some of the world's leading research organizations and universities are working to find out.

 RES energy energy transition clean energy

For example, the Rand Corporation, which has been developing military scenarios with the Pentagon for almost 70 years, is now using its arsenal of experts to solve the latest geopolitical question: What will the transition to green energy do to the world?

China, the world's largest emitter of greenhouse gases, has set itself ambitious decarbonization targets. The European Union already produces more clean energy than conventional energy. The United States has a president who talks about climate change. And clean energy initiatives are at the heart of his agenda.

Figuring out what this will mean for the world is no easy task. On the one hand, clean energy will be a democratizing resource that will enable countries to become more energy independent.

“After all, modern Saddam Hussein would have little reason to invade Kuwait. For what? Capture his solar farms? Because desolate Kuwait won't be anything special anymore, – notes Bloomberg Green “It would be cheaper to buy solar panels than to start a war for that.”

Clean energy is an expensive pleasure that is not available to everyone

On the other hand, many countries are likely to be left behind in the new “green” world order. Inequality and competition will arise over access to technology, infrastructure, finance and new materials to create energy.

In the near future, the rare earths needed for clean energy technologies will become the new oil. China currently controls over 90% of some of these important metals. And he showed that he was ready to use this power for political gain.

Moreover, if the oil market collapses before the world's oil and gas states can diversify their economies, there will be economic shocks and conflicts. They will create a power vacuum and clear the way for radicalism to flourish.

A new study by the UK think tank Carbon Tracker has shown that 40 fossil fuel-dependent countries will lose more than half of their oil and gas revenues. If humanity achieves global climate targets, it “could destabilize governments and leave countries like Nigeria or Iraq incapable of ensuring their security.”

For a successful and peaceful transition to a green economy, richer countries will need close the financial holes, says the European Council on Foreign Relations February report.

“In today's competitive and nationalist environment, it is difficult to imagine a smooth and rapid transition to green energy,” Bloomberg writes. Increasing energy independence of countries will not necessarily create the conditions necessary to stabilize this environment.

One thing is clear: clean energy will require cooperation on a global scale, the likes of which we have never seen. Climate change could be a great incentive to unite. But only if the world community can postpone political and geopolitical squabbles in the interests of fighting this common enemy. Otherwise global warming is likely to be accompanied by large-scale conflicts. : ///

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