European financial and energy crises could be solved through renewable energyJune 11, 2012
Crisis spurs development of new plan
Europe continues to struggle to reign in its evolving financial crisis, which is being augmented by an emerging energy crisis that continues to create power outages in many countries. The European Monetary Union (Euro Zone) has taken the international limelight once again as Spain becomes the latest member of the union to request financial aid from the EU. The Spanish government has been closing banks that have performed poorly in the past year due to faulty loans. EU leaders have expressed concern in continuing to address the financial and energy crises separately. A new plan has emerged concerning renewable energy that could kill two birds with one stone.
Alternative energy continues to gain traction throughout the region
Renewable energy is often considered to be an environmental or political issue. The concept has been gaining traction as an economic issue, however, due to the number of benefits it can bring to adopters. Renewable energy systems allow countries to generate electricity at low or no cost, which translates as financial benefit for countries that are currently struggling to cope with the rising cost of energy. These energy systems also allow countries to break away from fossil-fuels, which is also considered an economic benefit due to the rising prices of oil. Dutch economist Sweder van Wijnbergen has devised a plan to make use of solar and wind energy to eliminate the debt that prevails throughout the Euro Zone.
Plan focuses on the use of solar and wind energy
According to Wijnbergen’s plan, the adoption of efficient and high-performance solar and wind energy systems could lead to a debt reduction of at least 30%. These energy systems would have to take root in the countries that have been most impacted by the European financial crisis, such as Greece and Ireland, where they will not only provide and economic boost but also help solve the energy crisis that is emerging in these countries. The economist suggests that renewable energy is the best way forward for Europe, rather than the austerity measures that have been implemented by EU leaders.
Support abounds, but EU has yet to take action
The plan has garnered a degree of support throughout Europe, which has already begun moving to embrace renewable energy. Germany has also praised the plan for its focus on solar and wind energy, despite being the country that most aggressively supported austerity measures. Whether the EU will adopt a version of Wijnbergen’s plan has yet to be seen.