The American Solar Energy Society (ASES) – a six decade-old community of researchers, technology innovators, and practitioners working to develop and apply renewable energy sources – will, for the first time, focus its annual conference on using renewable energy to take urgent climate action that will lead to carbon-free electricity, transportation and building energy use within the next 20 years. This year’s annual Conference, SOLAR 2019, will take place at the Crowne Plaza AiRE in Minneapolis, MN on August 6-8, 2019.
Climate change is real, and we are already seeing evidence of its impacts. Past efforts in the U.S. and internationally to address climate change have been seriously inadequate, and this has now put us into a crisis situation. Ours is the last generation that can take dramatic action to keep the planet habitable for future generations.
The good news is that we are not alone in calling for urgent climate action. Leaders ranging from cities and states to national governments and international bodies are laying out plans to dramatically and immediately reduce greenhouse gas emissions – mainly carbon dioxide from burning carbon fuels. And civil society , including organizations such as ASES, is working to spread information and promote actions to further enable the speedy application of these technologies.
On Tuesday morning August 6, the first plenary sessions of the ASES Annual Conference will include expert speakers who will lay out the urgent need for global climate action, and who will highlight renewable energy actions that are being taken by national, state and local governments that will mitigate the effects of climate change. The transformation to clean energy sources will result in an explosive growth in businesses producing electricity from renewable energy sources (wind, solar and renewable fuels) and the infrastructure to transmit the clean electricity to where it will be needed. These renewable sources can ultimately meet all of our energy needs: including not only our electricity supply, but also our transport requirements, heating our buildings and industry, and cooking our food and heating our water.
Following up on the messages from these opening speeches, the Conference will feature two lively days of sessions covering specific climate actions that can be taken by governments, communities, advocacy organizations, conservationists, engineers, architects, researchers and individuals in the electricity, transportation and buildings sectors.
In summary, the Conference will highlight the situation that although the challenge is great and that we must act now, the solutions to climate change are economically viable and readily available, and that political will is the most important challenge to address the climate crisis head on.