Contrary to “Common Wisdom,” Fossil Fuels Are Not the Cheaper Route for Nation’s Future.
Groundbreaking Synapse Energy Economics Study.
For it Details Savings, New Jobs, Environmental & Health Benefits of Ending “Business As Usual”. Especially the Reliance on Dirty Energy
WASHINGTON, D.C.///November 16, 2011///It is a myth that switching to safe, renewable energy would mean an unreliable U.S. power supply that also is too expensive to afford. That is the major conclusion of a new Synapse Energy Economics report prepared for the nonprofit Civil Society Institute that details a future with more energy efficiency and renewable energy and less reliance on coal and nuclear power.
Titled “Toward a Sustainable Future for the U.S. Power Sector: Beyond Business as Usual 2011” report outlines a realistic transition to a cleaner energy future. One that would result in a net savings of $83 billion over the next 40 years.
The Synapse report also details other major benefits, including: the avoidance of tens of thousands of premature deaths due to pollution; the creation of hundreds of thousands of new jobs. Especially sharp cuts in carbon pollution. Moreover and significant cuts in water consumption for power production.
The new Synapse report findings for CSI are also particularly significant. Especially in view of the fact that a strong majority of Americans want the U.S. to be a clean energy leader on a global basis.
For more than three in four Americans (77 percent). That’s including 65 percent of Republicans. Also 75 percent of Independents, 88 percent of Democrats, and 56 percent of Tea Party members. For they all agree with the following statement.
The U.S. needs to be a clean energy technology leader and it should invest in the research and domestic manufacturing of wind, solar and energy efficiency technologies.
(For details on this November 3, 2011 CSI national opinion survey, see http://www.civilsocietyinstitute.org
Key highlights of the new Synapse/CSI report include the following:
1. Due in part to a significantly increased emphasis on energy efficiency, power sector carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 2020 would fall 25 percent below 2010 levels; by 2050, such pollution would be 81 percent below 2010 levels. Under status quo trends, CO2 emissions would grow 28 percent from current levels by 2050.
2. The steep health and environmental (including water use) impacts of coal-fired electricity are dramatically reduced and, by 2050, eliminated altogether when all such facilities are retired. For example, over 50,000 premature deaths are avoided relative to status quo trends linked to pollution from coal-fired plants.
3. The construction and operation of the new power plants in the first decade would create roughly 3.1 million new job-years – the equivalent of 310,000 people employed for the entire decade.
4. Natural gas use in 2050 would be reduced 28 percent from projected levels for 2050.
5. By retiring about one quarter of the existing fleet of nuclear power reactors and not building any new ones, the risks associated with nuclear power generation and the nuclear fuel cycle are reduced considerably.
Based in Newton, MA., the nonprofit and nonpartisan Civil Society Institute (http://www.CivilSocietyInstitute.org)
and the Hybrid Owners of America (http://www.HybridOwnersofAmerica.org).
Synapse Energy Economics, Inc. (http://www.synapse-energy.com/)