DESERTEC stands for clean energy and local added value in desert regions.
In his function as new Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the DESERTEC Foundation, Roland Berger has concluded an intergenerational contract with young people from all over the world and has promised to promote the realisation of the DESERTEC Vision worldwide. Desert power is urgently needed locally for food production, drinking water and as the basis for prosperity suitable for grandchildren.
DESERTEC stands for clean energy and local added value in desert regions. After a learning phase, the previous activities in the focus region EUMENA are now being globally scaled in order to create the basis for prosperity together with the local population: Clean energy. Simultaneously, the DESERTEC Foundation is working on the acceleration of the energy revolution in the industrialised countries by complementing the local energy mix with optimized load sequence of desert power.
“There are always reasons not to do things but at least one major reason to do things: The responsibility for our Earth, for the clean prosperity of all people, for our children and grandchildren”, Roland Berger said and he added: “Emerging regions urgently need clean and reliable energy as the basis for prosperity, food and drinking water production. At the same time, we can accelerate the energy revolution of the rich world with energy imports from desert regions. We have to promote this development. It’s not about Germany or Europe, it’s our responsibility for the whole planet. We must not destroy the future of the children with technology of yesterday.”
In his function as Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Roland Berger symbolically signed an intergenerational contract for this purpose together with young people in the Montgelassaal at Bayerischer Hof in Munich on May 22nd 2015: Roland Berger promises to do everything he can, together with his networks, to ensure that the DESERTEC Vision becomes reality. In return, the young people who are from all parts of the world have promised him to stand up for the dissemination of the idea in their home countries. Felix, the founder of the global childen an youth initiative Plant-for-the-Planet (17) signed the contract: “Already today, we have 30,000 children who give speeches about planting trees. And from now on, the young people will also promote desert power. We already have a functioning fusion reactor that works reliably and is at a safe distance from us: The sun. As you know, it doesn’t send us any bills and if the costs passed on to society are taken into account, renewable energy is by far the cheapest solution. Four gigawatts of clean power plants have to be connected to the grid every day to make our survival possible and to enable clean prosperity for all people in 2050.“
Jonathan Walters, former World Bank Director for the MENA region and now a new member of the team in the Supervisory Board of DESERTEC: “The age for desert power has come: Right now, Morocco is building the largest solar power plant of the world, the United Arabian Emirates is generating solar energy at a price of 6 US Cent per kilowatt hour –the lowest price worldwide-, Tunisia is planning a solar power plant with a performance of 2,000 megawatts in order to be able to sell the optimized load sequence of solar energy to Europe as well. I say: “Europe, let the sun in! What could be better for Europe than solar energy from the other side of the Mediterranean that at the same time generates jobs over there and therefore strengthens the Arabic democracies. 90% of us humans could be supplied with clean desert power. The world has to find ways to use its desert power instead of blocking it. That’s what DESERTEC is about and that’s why I participate.”
Andreas Huber, Management of DESERTEC, adds: “In 2013, the industry confirmed the feasibility of our vision in the Dii Report “Getting Started”. In the long term, there is hardly any other choice than to understand the Mediterranean region as a centre instead of a border. DESERTEC promotes this understanding globally and removes blockades. Educational measures like the school material that has been newly developed with Greenpeace and the DESERTEC Academies together with young people illustrate the great potential of energy cooperations and create acceptance for the political implementation. We are helping to quickly terminate the dark age of the “oil burners”. In addition to the current focus region EUMENA, the foundation will in future particularly engage in Brazil, Chile, Mexico, Iran, India, Western Africa and in Southern Africa. In future, the DESERTEC Foundation will cooperate much more decentralised and with the local people. The strategy is to strengthen the 12 currently working coordinators in the world and to extend it to an international association, the DESERTEC Alliance. The organisations that will act in the respective countries will not only raise awareness and promote the implementation, but also for example arrange financing for power plants. „ Positive effects for the people in the relevant countries have to arise with the use of renewable energies. The aim to generate jobs by education and knowledge transfer and to create local added value is promoted by the greater cooperation with universities.“
Fotos: Thomas Effinger