Estonian President: First countries to go green will gain the most

President Kaljulaid at the World Energy Congress: first countries to go green will gain the most

Speaking at the 24th World Energy Congress in Abu Dhabi President of Estonia Kersti Kaljulaid spoke of the need to create favourable conditions and legal space for green energy technologies worldwide and that the old adage – first ones gain, last ones pay – still holds true when going greener:

The payday will not come quickly enough for us to directly benefit, but our children will.

President Kaljulaid

President Kaljulaid brought examples of forces and existing technology currently in favour of green energy adaption and concluded that what is keeping us globally from going green is the same factor as with development aid distribution:

„Transaction costs of getting such a global agreement, implementing and controlling the results in a clear feedback loop cannot be done unless we find the market forces to do so. All states who have escaped poverty and reached the ranks of developed nations – including Estonia, in last 30 years – have demonstrated that it can only happen if you align your societal needs, in this case going green, with the interests of the market.“

According to President Kaljulaid, we see the EU getting ready to declare the need for climate neutrality by 2050, already with the objective of 80% neutrality. „It is the world`s biggest and richest single market, and it has a political class, which understands that these objectives can only be achieved if we skew the market forces and force the market to adapt to our demand of no CO2 emissions. This is torturous to current energy producers and distributors, but this torture is absolutely necessary,“ President Kaljulaid added.

„Hence the only thing what helps us is exactly what the EU does – we skew the markets, by administrative capacity, because we have the general support of our people to do so – to adjust to carbon-free future. Yes, our societies – yours and mine – will bear the cost of the transformation. But in the end, technologies become cheaper and other markets will apply them for purely market reason, if green is making more economic sense then dirty energy,“

president Kaljulaid said.

According to President Kaljulaid, it will create more economic sense to apply all green technologies globally, and if this happens, we all might become CO2 free energy users the critical 5 or 10 or 20 years quicker.

„The planet will still heat somewhat more, the water levels will keep rising somewhat, but it might be tolerable. We, the humankind, would never know ourselves how close to the brink we came, but so be it. I prefer the market forces pushed by smart policymaking and legal space-setting to act quickly and save us all from knowing the alternative,“

president Kaljulaid stated.

Photo: Office of the President

The complete speech of President Kersti Kaljulaid at the World Energy Congress can be read here:

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