ST. LOUIS, Feb. 26, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Calling global energy poverty the world's number one human and environmental crisis, Peabody Energy (NYSE:BTU) today launched a comprehensive global campaign aimed at building awareness and support to eliminate energy poverty, increase access to low-cost electricity and improve emissions through advanced clean coal technologies.
The "Advanced Energy for Life" campaign will work to educate and mobilize world leaders, multi-national organizations, a wide range of institutions and stakeholders, and the general public to:
- End the crisis of global energy poverty, which affects half the world's population and leads to crippling impacts to human health, standards of living and damage to the environment;
- Drive policies and support actions that increase access to reliable, low-cost power – particularly today's advanced coal technologies – that extends lives, builds economies and improves both natural and indoor environments; and
- Employ today's advanced technologies to reduce key power plant emissions. Longer term, pursue greater development of next-generation technologies and the regulatory framework to capture, use and store carbon dioxide emissions.
"More than a decade ago, the United Nations Millennium Goals called for a rapid halving of extreme global poverty by 2015 – and a half century ago, U.S. President Johnson declared war on poverty," said Peabody Energy Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Gregory H. Boyce. "Yet today, 3.5 billion people in the world lack adequate access to energy, and more than 4 million people needlessly die each year from the effects of energy poverty. We have the technologies and the global resources to end this crisis. All of us must work together toward realistic solutions."
The need for modern energy is enormous. Half of the world's 7 billion people lack adequate access to energy, including 1.2 billion children, based on data from the International Energy Agency and the World Bank. Household air pollution from indoor fires is estimated to be the fourth leading cause of death in the world, and results in a stunning 100 million years of life prematurely lost as measured by Disability Adjusted Life Years (DALY), a metric established by the World Health Organization. Each DALY represents one year of healthy life lost to disease."These sobering statistics demonstrate that energy poverty is the real human and environmental crisis facing the world today," said Boyce. "The greatest crisis we confront is not an environmental crisis predicted by computer models, but a human crisis fully within our power to solve. For too long, we have been focused on the wrong priorities."