Renewables chief urges students to choose STEM subjects in climate fight

The chief executive of Siemens Gamesa, Markus Tacke, has issued a rallying call for students worldwide to study science, technology, engineering and mathematics and then pursue a career in renewable energy to play their part in halting climate change.

“You can do something,” he said. “You can choose to be the one that will make change happen. Choose a career that will turn your curiosity and passion for change into solutions. Solutions that we need now, and which we will need even more tomorrow.”

His remarks come as students such as Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg have transformed the climate change debate this year, bringing new urgency and energy to the growing crisis.

Tacke acknowledged the impact that young people have had on the issue and made an unwavering commitment to bringing clean energy to society as part of the effort to tackle the crisis.

He also highlighted the role that regulators, governments and companies have in driving energy transformation. “We all come here today from different areas: representatives of the industry, analysts, political institutions. But we all have the same concern: how to use the knowledge and the instruments we have right now to start addressing climate change, because there is real urgency.”

“Financial incentives and clear policies are still lacking. The barriers to a full-scale transition to renewable energy lie not just with technology costs, but also with long term strategies and investments to make those ambitious plans reality.”

Tacke was speaking at the launch of a new report from KPMG ” which was commissioned by Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy ” which concludes that an uptake of wind energy would slash pollution, save lives and preserve vital water resources.

The report highlights significant gains for society through the delivery of clean energy: it found that wind could increase its contribution to global electricity demand from the existing 4 per cent to 34 per cent by 2040.

It also claims that wind could account for 23 per cent of the necessary reduction in carbon emissions by 2050: 5.6 billion tonnes of CO2, equivalent to the annual emissions of the 80 most polluting cities. “This reduction would have real benefits for society, saving up to four million lives a year and reducing health-related costs by up to 3.2 trillion dollars a year,” it states.

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Kelvin Ross is Editor-in-Chief of Enlit Europe and Power Engineering International. A journalist for more than 30 years, he has worked on regional, national and international newspapers, as well as trade magazines serving sectors including insurance, shipping, health and financial markets. He has covered the energy sector for more than 10 years. He helped establish Energy Live News in the UK before joining PEi and he has been ranked among the top 100 global influencers on Twitter for 'renewable energy' and 'smart grid' topics.

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