Anglo/Dutch oil company Shell is to invest a total of US$20m (euros 18.8m) over the next three years in programmes to cut the environmental impact of fossil fuel use and increase access to sustainable energy sources, it announced today. Managing Director Jeroen van der Veer launched the "Sustainable Energy Initiative" at the global sustainable energy fair, which runs from 26-27 May in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. He said the programme responded to the "key challenge for the next century to provide energy in a cleaner and more sustainable way." The company will invest US$3m this year in the programme, and expects this figure to rise to an annual US$25 investment within 10 years. The initiative is Shell's first global social investment programme and pulls together existing projects as well as initiating new ones. Projects will focus on technological development, energy policy and education, and will emphasise efforts to reduce carbon emissions due to fossil fuel use. They will also support traditional renewable energy sources in developing countries, such as using rice stalks as a biofuel. According to Shell, the initiative will complement existing programmes to develop individual renewable energy sources like solar and hydrogen cars. Delegates at the Global Renewable Energy Fair will tomorrow discuss how the EU can achieve its future targets for renewable energy use.
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