24 November, 07:09
My name is Luis Daniel Rivera, I am from Mexico. I have been interested in the renewable energies for a few years now, and the best proof is that I am currently studying my Master Degree in Renewable Energies here in Oldenburg. I finished my Bachelor in Mechatronics Engineering in 2011, but my field of interest was already evident a few years before that. As an example, I remember in 2006 there was a big discussion in Mexico about the rising prices of crude oil, and that made me wonder why we are so dependent on fossil fuels, why have we always been so, and why everything seemed like we would for ever be. Even before that, one page of my textbooks from primary school made a comparison between the fossil fuels, the environment, and the renewable energies. That made me wonder why, if the technology is known, we do not see it more often. After my university graduation, I started working for a well known automotive parts supplier, a good job at a multinational company. What else could I ask for? I was satisfied with it, but I was not happy with the final destination of the pieces we produced there. They all ended up in gasoline engine cars. In my quest for the renewables, I quitted my job, took part in several courses and trainings, and eventually got a job as technical support for a solar energy equipment wholesaler. I was much more satisfied with the product of my work, in the end I was helping the spread of the renewables. However, it was far from enough. From those various courses I took, I got a much better understanding of the renewables, the environment, and of the sustainability issue as a whole. Here is a list of few shocking facts I learned: * The science and technology needed for a 100% renewable energy supply for the world has been there already for decades; * We are running out of fossil fuels, but they will last a few hundred years more; * Economic growth the way we know it leads to infinite growth, but our planet actually has limited resources; * Global warming is starting to be perceived, but its real effects will come much later, and those in the poorest regions of the world will be the ones that suffer the most from it; * Climate change is far more a threaten than the lack of energy for the future, it can actually be called “planetary destabilization”, and its effects can be comparable to the massive extinction geological eras planet Earth has gone through. I was never an environmental activist, but after getting a better understanding of the current situation, knowing that the renewables are just a tiny piece of the whole sustainability puzzle, I realized that all environmental campaign efforts put together are far from enough. We are facing the biggest challenge our species has ever encountered, and the only way out is to sum up all the efforts from all parts of society. Academia, industry, entrepreneurs, educators, civil society, governments, all have to participate, and this is probably where most of the challenge comes from. I decided to follow a career in the Renewable Energies because it is where my strengths lie, but I understand and support all the movements around sustainability and environment, and especially those with the goal of raising awareness. One of the milestones to make this change happen is to work on the other side of the scale from the hard sciences, it means from the social sciences and from society itself. Making this message be heard by the scientific world is not a challenge, but reaching an agreement on how the economic and then the whole political system should be, that is a challenge. That is what we all have to strive for, that is the change I want to see, for the world, for the better.