Renewable Energy: Can it replace fossil fuels…

Renewable energy has been both praised and derided as an alternative source of power over the past two decades. To its detractors it is inefficient, unreliable and economically unsound. To its advocates it is free, clean, and unlimited in its potential. With global reliance on dwindling oil reserves an international political priority, attention continues to focus on renewable energy and its applications.

This months Comment Visions examines the developments in renewable energy by talking to a man whose work harnesses the power of the sun to produce cooling technology. Dr Ahmet Lokurlu is a Turkish engineer and scientist whose company produces air conditioning systems run by solar power. Generating energy from the sun and turning it into cold air in countries where fuel-hungry air conditioning accounts for more than 40% of totally energy use vividly demonstrates the innovative solutions renewable sources can provide.

The 2007 Road Map for Renewable Energy agreed by EU member states set the target of 20% of energy to be provided by renewable sources by 2020, highlighting the importance of the issue within the broader debate over energy challenges. As Dr Lokurlus work demonstrates it is technological development rather than political will, which will set the course for renewable energy in the future. This interview takes a fascinating look at this development and the role innovation can play in changing how we power the planet.

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Entrepreneur and business developer for community projects in Southern-Africa, with outreach experience since 1984. A focus upon encouraging households, business, agricultural and farming towards ever greener technology.