The Global Apollo Program: Making renewable energy cheaper than coal

The Global Apollo Program aims to assemble the greatest scientific minds to tackle renewable energy development.

Creating a world powered by limitless clean energy is the focus of the Global Apollo Programme. As the atmosphere’s concentration of carbon dioxide continues to rise to harmful levels, a group of UK scientists, economists and businessmen have proposed that the greatest scientific challenge in the world can only be solved by a coordinated, international effort, similar to the publically funded research efforts that put a man on the moon.

So far, the biggest hindrance to renewable energy development is its cost. The Global Apollo Program will over the next 10 years seek cheaper ways to harvest the Earth’s vast natural resources, with the goal of leaving fossil fuels in the ground.

The program also calls for advancements in the way we store and distribute energy. “This strategy is about making energy cheaper and cleaner. It is an optimistic, pro-growth, pro-technology, pro-business solution.”

The program is backed by prominent figures like businessman Sir David King, and the UK’s climate change envoy, Lord Nicholas Stern, Lord Adair Turner and ex-BP chief Lord John Browne. It calls for £15 billion per year in funding from leading governments, above and beyond the 2 per cent of the world’s publicly funded RD&D (Research, Development and Demonstration) currently allocated to renewable research.

“We are talking about the greatest material challenge facing humankind. Yet the share of global publicly-funded RD&D going on renewable energy worldwide is under 2 per cent,” say the researchers.

Conservationist and broadcaster Sir David Attenborough backed the program most recently, saying: “If clean energy became cheaper than coal, gas, or oil, fossil fuel would simply stay in the ground. The Global Apollo program is a positive and practical way to make that happen.”