Sustainability is described, as a development that meets the needs of the presents without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Development is the greatest threat to sustainability and environmental issues therefore I agree to a certain extent that global economic development is a theat. This is because emerging countries and many of the LEDCs that are trying to increase demand due to an increase in the number of their population and growing middle classes which tend to seek for a better standard of living. These people are more likely to demand for higher quality goods and services which could have effect the world energy supply. The developing world gets 80% of its energy from fossil fuels which are unsustainable, as easily accessible fossil fuels are non-renewable and will run out and burning them has a dangerous effect on the climate. As fossil fuels would release many pollutants such as Co2 and So2 into the atmosphere which could effect the environment and global temperature caused leading to global warming and greenhouse gases.
In the UK, the usage of fossil fuel is very high as in 2010 40% of the energy came from gases which is highly unsustainable to in term of environmental, economic and political. Within the UK there is a threat to the sustainability of world energy supplies as there is a lack of efficiency in place with the supply of energy within the UK and so two thirds of energy is lost in coal and oil powered stations or during transition from the power stations to the home. This has led to a lack of economic and social sustainability as it has led to costs remaining fairly high within the UK due to the lack of efficiency and effectiveness of the UK energy system due to large amounts of wastage and so has led to the prices charged to consumers being greater. The UK is economically developed and has greater infrastructure and investment opportunities to develop renewable sources of energy as alternative forms of energy need massive investment into research and development in order to be effective, efficient and relatively large scale.
In 2010 there has been an increase in renewables of 5% in the UK. Recently the Thanet offshore wind farm has been developed just off of the cost of the UK. This provide an alternative sources of energy supply in the UK as, wind turbines generate electricity through strong winds capturing kinetic energy forcing the blades round and driving the turbines and create completely renewable energy. It has cost £780 million and is the world’s largest offshore wind farm. There are 100 of wind turbines about 7 miles off of Thanet, Kent and is able to generate electricity for 200,000 homes. Also for the maintenance of the wind turbines and the generation of electricity, 34,000 direct permanent jobs will be created and by 2020 it aims to produce 15% of UK’s energy from renewable sources. This shows that the UK is making more steps towards greater sustainability and if used on a large scale would not be such a great threat to the sustainability of world energy supplies. It creates more jobs, able to supply energy for a large amount of homes and so could increase security of supplies and reduce the level of risk from just relying on unsustainable. The UK set the target to produce 15% of the UK’s energy from renewable energy sources by 2020 and so this will help to increase the UK’s level of sustainability substantially. This would reduce the reliance of the UK imported energy from Russia and would allow UK to cope with future situation if there is conflict between the countries. However, this may be small scale as 3/5 of the energy in the UK is imported can provide energy on a much larger scale.
In China, the biggest global consumer of coal and so they have 41% of world consumption which is a fossil fuel. As