The first Earth Day celebration in 1970 provided a platform for the growing environmental movement to place their concerns at the center of public attention and inspire action. As a 15-year-old participant, it also helped propel me to a career in the environment. Today, 52 years later, Earth Day represents the largest secular observance in the world as more than a billion people come together to lend their voices to galvanize policy change. At DGA, we continue to use our voice to fight for clean energy solutions that address enduring economic, environmental, and social injustices and catalyze global decarbonization.
Earth Day provides an opportunity for reflection on our past and future climate and clean energy battles. As we prepare for the fight ahead, we must also observe the progress we have made.
The recent report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change delivered a stark message about how far we are from solving climate change and the urgent need for us to rapidly accelerate the scale and pace of zero- and low-carbon technologies. But buried in the report was this chart outlining the rapidly falling costs of wind power, solar electricity, and batteries, and the accompanying rapid uptake of these technologies.
That’s what I am celebrating on Earth Day – amazing progress on three of our most important climate solutions. That progress gives me hope we can dramatically scale up the use of these technologies now. But the progress we have made on wind, solar, and batteries also provides a model for how we lower the costs and scale up the use of all the climate solutions, such as hydrogen and other clean fuels, carbon capture and storage, direct air capture, solar thermal, geothermal, efficiency (always underestimated), and a wide range of electrification technologies. Climate change is a huge global challenge which demands a wide range of solutions. There isn’t a sliver bullet out there, but an amazing array of silver buckshot. Wind, solar, and batteries have shown us the roadmap for how we can bring those technologies to the market.
It will take systemic change to deliver decarbonization and long overdue environmental justice to communities around the world. While the time to act may be short, the good news is that we know what we need to do, and we have all the tools we need to do it. Let’s seize the opportunity!
Learn more about DGA’s efforts to advance climate solutions and clean energy technologies by visiting our Projects page.