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Role of Energy in Achieving Sustainable Energy Goals
Presently, our world economy is not running on a sustainable pathway which in turn indicating that many major changes will be required to make the whole system sustainable. In order to implement those required changes, in September 2015, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) has launched Sustainable Development Goals (referred as SDG) scheme.
These SDGs are the blueprint for acquiring sustainable future for the whole globe. Besides, these sustainable goals discourse the sustainable development challenges we are facing presently, associated with peace, climate, poverty, inequality, environmental deprivation, wealth, and justice. Additionally, these SDGs are interrelated with each other so that we can accomplish each of SDGs effectively as well as their associated targets by 2030 (Sustainable Development Goals, 2018).
Therefore, this discussion will draw the role of energy in achieving SDGs. Besides, identifying and addressing the major energy issues, challenges while achieving SDGs will be a part of this essay.
Concepts of sustainable development contain three pillars comprising of social, economic and environmental growth of the nation while keeping the future population demands in mind (Sachs, 2012). The sustainable development conceptual framework is introduced for building the goal interactions in specifically local, national and regional contexts.
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In this way, this concept of sustainability interrelate many factors include future land use planning, transportation, education, and urban density (Bass & Dalal-Clayton, 2012). Additionally, as there are total 17 goals in the sustainability achievement scheme by 2030 hence climate change, greenhouse gases emissions and energy generation requirements will also be considered in the SDGs. Concept of sustainability is not about a single goal achievement but it is a wide concept comprising numerous factors of overall development of any nation or country.
Thus, sustainable development is a concept that depicts diverse national or global energies to pursue an optimistic vision of a globe, where every basic human requirement can be fulfilled without eradicating or irretrievably degrading our natural resources (Lu et al., 2015).
When it is required to achieve all SDGs in given time then sustainable use of energy and energy conservation is essential to be adopted as early as possible. All 17 SDGs clearly requiring effective energy use for the proper implementation and achievement set targets. As we know that there can be no growth and development without fuelling the engine with energy input (Kaygusuz, 2012). Besides, energy is a critical component and sustainable use of energy will provide the opportunity to live the future happily. As per the figures showing, one billion people from all over the globe still surviving without access to daily needed electrical power. Moreover, above 781 million human beings or in other words 39 per cent of the world’s population in 2016, were not able to access clean fuels, and cooking technologies (Birol, 2018).
If we will go through the all SDGs then we can get the role of energy for achieving SDGs. As per the goal of poverty and hunger that is goals 1 and 2 of SDG, using budget effective energy sources will directly impact the wellbeing as well as socio-economic lifestyle of world communities (United Nations Development Programme, 2018). If we will ensure availability of heat input for cooking, fuel for daily activities and lighting energy at all places throughout the urban to rural areas, then it will add to the attempt of removing poverty and hunger from the global communities. Similarly, we can identify the role of energy in every step of sustainable goals. As an example, goals 3 and 4 of SDGs emphasize on education as well as health of the community. Hence to ensure global health and well-being efficient energy devices and renewable energy projects implementation is needed. It will effectively impact global health in achieving global health targets set by UNDP by 2030. Moreover, replacement of fossil fuels with the renewable-energy sources will help in minimizing hazardous gaseous emission such as CO2 emission, which deteriorates people health. In this context, for attaining goal-4, global literacy ratio and education performance can be enhanced by providing electrical energy resources in rural areas. Because, if there will be no enough electricity and lighting in village areas then the bridge gap will poorly influence the global education (United Nations, 2018).
Furthermore, to achieve goals 5 and 6 about water sanitation, hygiene and gender equality, the energy availability is mandatory. Because of the deficiency of cooking energy affects women entrepreneurs and school girls for their total development, hence the energy issues must be taken into account to end the search for cooking fuel among village areas. Additionally, all water treatment plants of industries run through electric power, so renewable energy use can address the deficiency of safe and pure water (United Nations Development Programme, 2018).
Goal-7 of the sustainable development goals clearly focus on global energy requirements, that is ensuring economic, reliable, and modern access to world energy for all will be attained through electrification advancement, specifically in LDCs and industrial energy efficiency improvements. Moreover, current researches and policy debates suggests that national primacies and policy ambitions need to be more strengthened for meeting the global energy targets by the era 2030 (Watson et al., 2010).
Similarly, Goal-8, of the SDGs is about developing the world sustainable energy sector. For that if we use newly designed renewable energy resources and execute innovative new energy projects, then global economies can reach on the upmost heights.
Moreover, for attaining rest of the SDGs such as industrialisation, acquiring equality, energy generation, conservation and its appropriate consumption is essential (Pearce et al., 2013). One SDG is about building global cities as well as human lifestyle secure, safe, sustainable and resilient, which is not possible without creating disciplined energy policies nationwide and countrywide. Besides, Goals 15 and 16 focus on environment as well as societal development; to have safe and green energy usage as the prime need for the 360 degree development (Sachs, 2012). Thus, goal-17 of SDGs is all about strengthening global nation’s partnerships, for implementing world energy sustainability any single nation cannot battle alone. Finally, for foundation of global partnerships of energy exchange and balancing the energy consumption energy challenges will be required to be resolved at high priority.
Some major energy issues those have arisen and probable to occur in future are as follows:
The figures show that most of the efficiency gains are derived from non-renewable energy resources such as thermal power, natural gas and oil, which is a major challenge while supplying the electric power demand of the globe. Besides, our attempts to find the methods to build an efficient non-conventional energy resource fuelled system will result into less coal and natural gas consumption. Therefore, presently increasing the efficiency of renewable energy systems must be our first priority (Nilsson et al., 2016).
The increased energy demand issues need to be resolved through rooftop PV. Besides, rooftop PVs are only able to supply short-term energy, hence in the long-time we need large sized PV for supplying huge base-load. Additionally, we need bigger solar power plants as well as huge wind farms worldwide. Thus, adopting geothermal, tidal, wind and marine power will provide their major contribution in supplying increased electrical energy demand. Therefore, building renewable technologies as commercially viable technologies is a challenge for the whole world (Kaygusuz, 2012).
All energy issues are having one solution that is sustainable use of energy; it will ensure green development, address poverty issue along with providing future opportunities for a sustained world and economic empowerment (Griggs et al., 2013). Here, sustainable use of energy means practising following methods of SDGs implementation:
In daily living we all consume a lot of diesel, petrol and other fuels for our daily transportation; hence train is the most efficient way of energy saving transportation.
Solar photo voltaic rooftops at our home
Solar energy is cleanest as well as cheapest energy form of energy, therefore wind farms and solar farms must be adopted for ecological reasons as well as their improved transmission capability.
Alternative fuelled or green sourced vehicles can remove the issue of less availability of conventional resources in the nature. Additionally, vehicle-to-grid (V2G) technology is useful in replacing renewable energy totally displacing fossil fuels through hybrid electric vehicles. Moreover, we need to establish the electric vehicle charging method as quick as possible to endorse innovative V2G enabled vehicles (Nelder, 2009).
In order to carry newly invented renewable electric power, a highly efficient, bigger, resilient, and smarter grid is required (Union of concerned Scientists, 2018). Therefore, using HVDC transmission, high power factor devices as well as enhanced power security apparatus, smart grid is being developed to address diverse energy demands (Watson et al., 2010).
In conclusion, all SDGs are action plans for people, planet and prosperity and effective energy sustainability is directly connected with their implementation. Moreover, if the SDGs will be attained successfully then it will bring transformation in the world by 2030. This is the reason that energy is at its most prominence place presently and SDGs representatives are now emphasizing on energy sustainability. Sustaining energy materials like conventional energy resources can be preserved for the better implementation of the SDGs. Further, energy sustainability contains water resources management, reduction of toxic emissions, and maintaining the global ecosystems. Thus, recognition the important role of energy lying in the SDGs and addressing the challenges while achieving those goals has become essential.
This is the reason that renewable energy sources are most important and increase efficiency
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