The social side of the energy transition E-Paper to browse Download as PDF
Issue January 2019

The social side of the energy transition

Editorial


Energy transition for all

The introduction by Michael Sailer, CEO of the Oeko-Institut

The transition to sustainable energy is a major societal venture. Back in 1980 the Oeko-Institut described the challenges of an energy supply “without oil and uranium” in its groundbreaking study that coined the term “energy transition” (Energiewende). The issues today are the phasing out of coal, the further expansion of renewables, energy efficiency and climate change mitigation. In short, we need an energy supply that is clean, affordable and safe – for everyone in our society. To achieve this, the German state must create the right incentives and it must invest. And that means that we members of the public must help finance the re-shaping of our energy system and our economy. From our point of view at the Oeko-Institut, it is important to consider how the burden is distributed so that ultimately everyone can afford clean electricity, access sustainable transport and adopt...

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Energy transition for all

In Focus


The social side of the energy transition

Balancing climate change mitigation and fairness

If we want to help keep global warming significantly below two degrees, we cannot avoid the energy transition. Its main aim is to create an energy supply that is clean but also safe and affordable. Key elements include replacing fossil and nuclear fuels with renewables and significantly reducing energy consumption. However, in addition to its positive environmental impacts, the energy transition also has social consequences. For example, the effects of higher electricity prices,... more

The social side of the energy transition

Efficiency and sufficiency

Reducing costs, advancing climate action

The success of the energy transition depends not only on what sort of energy we use but also on how we use it. Economical use of energy plays a major part in reducing CO2 emissions and combating climate change. The potential for cutting energy use is often particularly high in well-off households. At the same time, efficiency and sufficiency measures help to reduce the costs of electricity and heating incurred by private households. This benefits low-income households for whom... more

Efficiency and sufficiency

“What we need is an Energy Demand Ministry”

Interview with Professor Elizabeth Shove

Energy-efficient technologies and energy-conscious behaviour influence how much energy we use – but strategies like these do not challenge the social foundations of energy demand. Professor Elizabeth Shove believes that deeper and more comprehensive strategies are needed to engage with the many areas of public policy that impact indirectly on energy demand. Non-energy policies that matter for energy demand are, for instance, embedded in employment, health and education agendas. In... more

“What we need is an Energy Demand Ministry”

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