Last Wednesday night, before leaving the stadium after the launch of the Climate Rescue Station (CRS) in Bangkok, I looked back and saw the Earth glowing. It felt so beautiful I wanted to put my arms around it.
Being a Greenpeace campaigner, people always ask me why I do what I do – political lobbying, lead creative protests or sometimes putting myself at the risk of being apprehended by authorities. It’s not always an easy task but there is a reason that compels me to take action.
As a mother of two, I always strive to give my children the best. And that includes leaving them a planet that is able to sustain itself.
Climate change and energy issues are core to my work. I know that the proven coal reserves worldwide will only last us around 118 years at current rates of production. In comparison, proven oil and gas reserves are equivalent to 46 and 59 years respectively at current production levels.
While the availability of these fossil fuels will obviously outlast me, I know that its depletion will happen in the lifetime of my children and my grandchildren.
In contrast, renewable energy is practically inexhaustible. In just 30 minutes, the sun supplies as much energy as is consumed by the entire world in a year. What could be more obvious than to tap this inexhaustible energy source in order to save valuable fuels and to protect the environment from climate change?
When Greenpeace launched its first global Energy [R]evolution report in 2007, it projected that the global installed wind power capacity at the end of 2010 would be approximately 156 GW. The actual global installed renewable capacity at the end of 2010 was more than 197 GW while at the end of 2011, already 237 GW had been installed.
Renewable energy is a major success story already. But it is only a success in some parts of the world. More needs to be done.
The Greenpeace Energy [R]evolution is an innovative way in the way we use, produce and distribute energy. If implemented, it would protect the world from catastrophic climate change by phasing out fossil fuels while ensuring energy security for growing economies and populations like Thailand, the Philippines and Indonesia.
So on that Wednesday night, as I was walking away, I remembered that the CRS is powered solely by solar and wind. Surely an Energy [R]evolution is forthcoming. And that is the reason why I do what I do.
Amalie Obusan is Greenpeace Southeast Asia's regional climate and energy campaigner. You can follow her on Twitter via @acchobusan.