Markus Tacke: "All of us must act"
Madrid / 3 December 2019
Yesterday I attended the inauguration of the COP25 and it was great to be there and see the start of a climate summit that will attract over 20,000 participants. I would like to congratulate the rapid response of the Spanish government in managing to successfully organize this event at such short notice. At Siemens Gamesa we hope the summit will serve for governments to make more serious commitments to climate change and firm up projects that can stop the planet hurtling towards disaster. It is up to all of us to act to make transformative changes to help slow what is now a climate emergency.
This is the last meeting to assess progress on the Paris Agreement and plan the next steps before the 2020 deadline. We have seen several devastating climatic events this year; from Venice under water, or wild forest fires in Australia, Siberia, and the Amazon. These events cannot be ignored or taken for granted. It is true that this climate summit comes at a time of greater public awareness and a better understanding of the benefits that we will achieve if we strive to combat climate change. Young people around the world are demanding a bigger reaction so they do not have to suffer the consequences of a climate change that is now a reality; and in turn they have helped to increase public awareness of climate risks. They must be congratulated for this.
I would like to speak directly to them: You have the chance to make a wider impact. You can be directly involved, to be precursors of change through your own action. I urge you to choose to study science, technology, engineering and mathematics, the so-called STEM subjects. Right now, there is an alarmingly low rate of students that choose these studies and it will result in a deficit of professionals able to drive the development of the renewable energy sector, which is key in the transition to a low-carbon economy. Renewable energies need great professionals to push them forward given the key role they play in reversing climate change. Achieving the energy transition is essential and I would like to encourage you to take an active part in it.
As a case in point, a recent report by KPMG and commissioned by Siemens Gamesa on the Socioeconomic Impacts of Wind Energy, very clearly reflects the key benefits for future generations. If a realistic sustainable model was achieved this could mean €352 billion of savings in social costs by 2050 and 4 million lives would be saved each year by reducing air pollution. In addition, the report notes that wind energy would save 1.57 billion cubic metres of water by 2030.
In order to achieve all this, we need the collaboration of authorities and all industry stakeholders. We need to see confirmation of the political will to bring about a sustainable world.
Siemens Gamesa conceives global development to be underpinned by economic growth, social welfare and environmental protection. The company is committed to driving this global process forward and contributing to the achievement of SDGs and related objectives.
Sustainable development is present across all of our activities and drives every step that we take in the company.
But we must all work together – people, global industry, and governments across the world - to develop impactful measures to keep global warming below two degrees before next year's meeting in Glasgow, where long-term goals will be discussed. Climate change is happening now and it is our duty to act right now.