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Masdar Institute discusses renewable energy and climate change

Faculty from Masdar Institute of Science and Technology and SRREN authors from Working Group III of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) discussed the findings of the newly released Special Report on Renewable Energy and Climate Change Mitigation (SRREN).

The SRREN report enables policy makers, the private sector and civil society globally to identify ways in which to integrate renewable energy technologies into future energy systems. The report offered a snapshot of environmental and social consequences associated with the integration.

The SRREN pointed out how renewable energy can grow to meet nearly 80 per cent of the world's energy demand by 2050 if backed by the right public policies. The report reviewed 164 scenarios for the growth of new renewable energy sources, excluding traditional biomass.

The report also pointed out that there are important additional areas for research and highlighted the need to know more about managing energy systems, integrating very high levels of renewable energy.

The panel session saw faculty members engage in a discussion with the SRREN authors regarding the SRREN findings as well as the impact of these findings on a research-based institution. Masdar Institute panelists included faculty members Dr Hosni Ghedira and Dr Sgouris Sgouridis.

Based on the work being done at Masdar Institute, and recommendations of the SRREN, it was concluded that advancement in technologies as well as policies will be key for development of the energy systems that will need to be implemented in order to bring greenhouse gas emissions to levels that will prevent global temperature increases and related climate change that would be potentially devastating to society in the future.

"There is vast room for collaboration between the Masdar Institute and the IPCC. I believe a true partnership can be forged between us in our common goal of identifying gaps and finding viable solutions in the sphere of renewable energy, energy efficiency and climate change. We hope that this panel discussion is the first of many future joint discussions," said Dr. Fred Moavenzadeh, President of Masdar Institute of Science and Technology.

"As we look for new research opportunities, we use the technology, policy and systems framework to achieve a balanced research portfolio that addresses energy resource potentials, specific technologies for maximizing the harvest of energy from these resources, the environmental and social impacts of technology choices, the potential for technology innovation and the cost of deploying technologies now and in the future," said Dr. Steven Griffiths, Executive Director of Masdar Institute Office of Institute initiatives.

Chairman of IPCC Rajendra Pachauri said, "This special report on renewable energy was extremely important because we wanted to tell the world what can be done to mitigate emissions of greenhouse gases and thereby prevent or reduce the impacts and possible harm to the planet. We look forward to Masdar Institute's future achievements that will make a significant difference to the world as we know it."