Greenpeace announces comprehensive energy strategy for India to tackle Climate Change without compromising economic development

Press release - April 9, 2007
Renewable energy, combined with efficiencies from the ‘smart use’ of energy, can deliver half of India’s primary energy needs by 2050, according to the report: ‘Energy [R]evolution: A sustainable Energy Outlook for India’ launched today. Commissioned by the European Renewable Energy Council (EREC) and Greenpeace it provides a practical blueprint for reducing India’s carbon dioxide emissions by 4% in the next 43 years while providing a secure, affordable energy supply. The report highlights that this can be achieved while maintaining the much required rate of economic development and without relying on hazardous nuclear technologies. The 100-page Indian report has been developed by specialists from the Institute of Technical Thermodynamics at the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) and forms part of the Global Energy Outlook which offers solutions to reduce global CO2 emissions by 50% by 2050.

Greenpeace announces a comprehensive energy strategy to curb climate change by launching its report: ‘Energy [R]evolution: A sustainable Energy Outlook for India’

"The Energy Revolution scenario has come at a perfect time. The world is now crying out for a roadmap to tackle the dilemma of providing the much needed power without further contributing to climate change," said Ananthapadmanabhan, Executive Director, Greenpeace India. "We have shown that the world can have safe, robust renewable energy and can achieve the efficiencies needed while enjoying economic growth and phasing out damaging and dangerous sources such as coal and nuclear".

K. Srinivas, Climate and Energy Campaigner said "The Indian scenario up to the year 2050 was developed to address how India can combat climate change while maintaining development.  Assuming an average economic growth of 3.9% for the following decades in a business as usual scenario, CO2 emissions will increase three folds by 2050. The Energy [R]evolution scenario provides practical solutions to increase renewable energy usage and decrease energy consumption by 50% by incorporating energy efficiency measures. The combination will reduce our CO2 emissions to around 1000 million tonnes, stabilizing it at the present levels and helping India tackle the menacing impacts of climate change".

Srinivas further added "Mitigation of climate change requires long-term perspective. Energy infrastructure takes time to build up; new energy technologies take time to develop. Policy shifts often take many years to have an effect. Hence policy and investment decisions need to be taken now. We have another ten years to act; afterwards we will be doomed to react. More than ever before in the history of this planet and India it is the responsibility of the government and today's business leaders to heed the signs and abandon the path of fossil fuel addiction and Global Warming!"

According to the report, the contribution of renewables to the electricity mix needs to be gradually increased from the current 4% to 10% by 2010, 20% by 2020 and 65% by 2050. At the same time energy consumption has to be decreased by implementing energy efficiency measures. These will be made possible by swift policy changes. Inefficient lighting and other means of wasteful electricity consumption need to be phased out, fuel efficiency of cars needs to be increased and gasoline guzzlers banned from our roads. A Renewable Energy Law needs to be passed creating incentives to stop using coal and oil and invest in renewables instead. At the same time, Industry needs to implement their own climate policies aiming at significantly reduce CO2 emission from their products and production processes. 

The report also highlights the economic advantages of the energy revolution scenario- the market for renewable energy can grow at a double digit rate till 2050, and achieve the size of today's fossil fuel industry. It concludes that renewable energies will constitute the backbone of India's economy.

For further information, contact

K. Srinivas, Greenpeace India Climate and Energy Campaigner,
Ph: 09845112130, email:

Ruchira Talukdar, Greenpeace India Media Officer,
Ph: 09900264127, email:

A copy of the Energy [R]evolution: A sustainable world energy outlook report can be downloaded at:
India Report:

Global Report: and

Notes to Editor

More about the Energy [R]evolution: A sustainable Energy Outlook
The Energy Outlook gives a detailed analysis of how to restructure the global energy system based only on proven and sustainable technologies such as renewable energy sources and efficient, decentralised cogeneration. More than 30 scientists and engineers from universities, institutes and the renewable energy industry around the world collaborated to provide detailed regional assessments for the future potential for renewable energy sources and energy efficiency measures.

The Energy [R]evolution Scenario describes a development pathway which transforms the present situation into a sustainable energy supply, within a single generation. Today huge amounts of energy are wasted due to inefficient production, transport and energy uses. Exploitation of the large energy efficiency potential will restrict primary energy demand increase from the current 27,000 Pita Joules per year in 2003 to 37,000 PJ/a in 2050. In a business as usual scenario there would be an increase to 72,000 PJ/a. This 50% reduction of primary energy demand is a crucial prerequisite for achieving a significant share of renewable energy sources, compensating for the phasing out of nuclear energy and reducing the consumption of fossil fuels.

1. The report develops a global sustainable energy pathway up to 2050. The future potential for renewable energy sources has been assessed with input from all sectors of the renewable energy industry around the world, and forms the basis of the Energy [R]evolution Scenario.

2. The energy supply scenarios adopted in this report, which extend beyond and enhance projections by the International Energy Agency, have been calculated using the MESAP/PlaNet simulation model. This has then been further developed by the Ecofys consultancy to take into account the future potential for energy efficiency measures.

3. The Energy [R]evolution Scenario describes a development pathway which transforms the present situation into a sustainable energy supply through the following mechanisms:

• Exploitation of the large energy efficiency potential will reduce primary energy demand.
• The electricity sector will be the pioneer of renewable energy utilisation. By 2050, around 65% of electricity and 50% of the Primary Energy demands will be met from renewable energy sources.
• By 2050 the demand for electricity will increase from 120 to 880 Giga Watts.
• The major Renewable Energy Sources contributing to the electricity production in 2050 will be technologies that are already technically advanced. Solar Photo Voltaic will contribute 25%, Wind 20, Hydro 11% and Biomass 6%. Less advanced technologies like Geothermal or Ocean / wave and tidal energy will only contribute more significantly in the later part of the century. Large hydroelectric projects that are already established or are in an advanced construction phase will still contribute to Hydroelectric Power in 2050, but as funding of such projects will be discontinued in 2050, small, mini and micro Hydros will contribute to two thirds of the Hydroelectric power.
• To reduce the CO2 emission even within the production of electricity from fossil fuels, energy efficiency will be increased by providing 7% of the energy from combined cycle gas turbines which produce electricity while using the generated heat for heating or cooling purposes. As CO2 emissions per generated GW from Gas are far lower than emissions from coal, gas will also be introduced as bridging fuel, making up 22% percent of the overall electricity mix, while coal thermal power plants (presently being the biggest CO2 emitter in the country) will have a reduced share of only 6% in electricity production.
• In the heat supply sector, the contribution of renewable will remain stable at 70% in 2050, but traditional biomass use will be increasingly replaced by more efficient modern technologies, particularly solar collectors and geothermal energy.
• For the transport sector the energy [r]evolution scenario does not assume that by 2050 major technological breakthroughs like hydrogen fuel cells and Hybrid will force petrol and diesel automobiles from our roads. Fuel efficiency will be the most promising route in the near future to mitigate the impact of the transport sector on our climate
• The production of biomass to produce electricity or to be used as bio-fuels should not compromise food security or the protection of natural habitats and its biodiversity. Therefore, the potential for biomass will be limited to agricultural wastes and the use of wasteland. For bio-fuel to make a sustainable contribution to mitigate climate change, it is also inevitable that agricultural is sustainable, avoiding the use of polluting or energy consuming inputs.

4. India’s contribution to the global CO2 emissions will increase from 1,126 million tonnes in 2003 to approximately 4039 Million Tonnes in 2050, increasing it share in global emissions from 4.8 to 8.7% according to the business as usual scenario. The Energy Revolution Scenario provides solutions to reduce India’s CO2 emissions to 1000 million tonnes in the next 43 years.