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Report: World could end fossil fuel use by 2090

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Robert Harbison / Staff / FILE

(Read caption) Sun sets between oil rigs off Huntington Beach.

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Eighty-two years from now, as Guns N' Roses releases its seventh studio album and the events of "Leprechaun 4: In Space" take place, humanity could, if it so desires, belch out its very last puff of fossil-fuel emissions.

At least that's what a new report by Greenpeace and the European Renewable Energy Council says. Their Energy [R]evolution report, released Monday, outlines how solar power, wind farms, geothermal stations, and biofuels could meet all of the world's energy needs by the final decade of this century.

Getting started would cost a pretty penny – $14.7 trillion by 2030, according to the study. But according to the International Energy Agency, the world will spend $11.3 trillion on energy investments anyway, with a much greater focus on coal, oil, and nuclear power.

That's still 30 percent less, but the study argues that the difference would be more than made up for by slashing $18 trillion in fuel costs and creating a $360-billion-per-year industry. Additionally, the report says that the extra expense is justified given the costs – both economic and human – of global warming.


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