A renewed interest for energy efficiency 1


Think energy efficiencyAccording to the International Energy Agency many developing countries like India or China are increasing their energy efficiency efforts to slow down their oil consumption.

This is great news for peak oil and climate change mitigation. Meanwhile, the former British Prime Minister Tony Blair believes that energy efficiency is a faster solution than trading carbon-dioxide allowances.

Both news occur just days before the G8 meeting nears. One of the main topics will be climate change mitigation and the Copenhagen meeting that will take place in December.On the first news, the Wall Street Journal notes:

The International Energy Agency said non-OECD oil demand – which includes China, the world’s second biggest consumer after the U.S. – is expected to be about 1 million barrels a day lower by 2013 compared with its previous projection due to rising efficiency efforts such as improved vehicle gas-mileage standards.

China, India and other emerging markets have accounted for most of the increase in world oil consumption this decade.

The Chinese government then seemed to only confirm the IEA’s point about non-OECD efficiency efforts by announcing consumer gasoline and diesel price increases in its quest to nudge people to cut wasteful consumption. The price increases are the latest the Chinese government has implemented over the past year.

(…) What all this points to is that emerging markets are waking up to the fact that using energy more wisely puts money in consumer wallets, can help smooth out trade deficits and is better for the planet in terms of reducing carbon emissions.

This occurs as the Indian government stated that the country will reject greenhouse gas emission targets. But one needs to note that energy efficiency would save a lot of money to Indian businesses and citizens.

Regarding the second information, Bloomberg reported:

Former U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair said saving energy and forests will yield faster reductions in greenhouse gases than trading carbon-dioxide allowances.

Blair, one of the biggest advocates of capping and trading emission credits when he led Britain from 1997 to 2007, said global carbon markets will pay off after 2020. He spoke to reporters at a July 3 press conference to introduce today’s report from the London-based Climate Group, which includes governments and businesses focused on global warming.

“If you want to meet a target that’s just over a decade away, there are things that we know that work, that we have to do now,” Blair said. “Otherwise, we won’t get there.”

Blair, now a senior adviser at JPMorgan Chase & Co., the New York-based bank, said the carbon market “will take time to develop, and it will yield a significant benefit.”

I have been for years an advocate of energy efficiency. As we have seen here, energy conservation is the cheapest solution. It also has a huge potential.

Let’s hope that both developing and developed countries will work harder on energy conservation…


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