Global emissions from energy are flat. Now what ?

There are still reasons to cheer in our fight against climate change. According to the respected International Energy Agency’s new report, global greenhouse gases emissions from energy remained flat in 2016 while the global economy grew by 3.1 percent. 

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World Energy Outlook 2016 and global CO2 emissions

Every year in late November, it is the same thing: the very respected International Energy Agency publishes its World Energy Outlook. This year’s edition is interesting in more than one aspect.

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Five reasons to oppose nuclear

One of the most read articles on this blog is ” 10 reasons to support nuclear power “, which I wrote in 2009 when the situation was very different. A lot happened since then that has made me reconsider my stance on nuclear, so here is a counter-point.

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21 countries decouple economic growth from emissions

21 countries from Austria to the United States have cut their greenhouse gases emissions while growing their economies in the past 15 years. This proves that decoupling economic growth and greenhouse gases emissions is feasible. 

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Renewables will be the primary electricity source by 2030

With renewable energy sources ramping fast, it is no surprise that even the generally conservative International Energy Agency believes that solar, wind and the likes will the primary electricity source globally by 2030.

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Global emissions from energy sector stalled in 2014

Good news everyone ! According to the International Energy Agency, global carbon emissions related to the energy sector ” stalled ” last year. This took place in a time of global economic growth (+3% globally).

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Cleantech investments need to soar

A solar installationAccording to a report published in May by the International Energy Agency,  the clean energy investments needed to limit temperatures from warming to 2 degrees Celsius: an additional $44 trillion ( 32 trillion euros ) by 2050.

This means spending an additional $1.2 trillion in cleantech ( like solar, wind, geothermal, bioenergy…. ) per year for the next 36 years is needed in order to limit climate risk. But this represent investments, not costs.

Indeed, these investments would result in over $115 trillion in fuel savings. This represent would a net savings of $71 trillion. (51 trillion euros). 

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IEA World Energy Outlook 2013

IEA World Energy Outlook 2013The World Energy Outlook from the International Energy Agency is a key publication when it comes to energy and climate issues as it presents key indicators, facts and trends from renowned experts.

This year the IEA outlined the importance of ending fossil fuels subsidies – which amounted to $544 billion / 400€ billion last year, five times more than for renewables – to unleash more of the potential of energy efficiency.

Ending these subsidies globally is thus a vital necessity as current greenhouse gases emissions and carbon intensity would propel us in a warming of 3.6°C, ie. the end of our civilization.

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Energy efficiency delivers a lot, could do more

IEA Energy efficiency market report 2013You know it if you have been reading this blog for some time : I am quite passionate about energy efficiency and its huge potential. Now here come two major reports that will hopefully transform you in energy efficiency enthusiasts.

The International Energy Agency ( IEA ), the OECD energy office, have published recently a great report on energy efficiency, an often overlooked solution to climate change, energy scarcity and peak oil, and increasing energy prices.

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) have found equally interesting figures for the United States in one of their latest studies.

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Wind could account for 18% of global electricity by 2050

Offshore wind turbinesThe electricity mix of 2050 is getting a bit clearer. To the International Energy Agency analysts, wind power could be behind 18 percent of the global electricity mix by mid century. This has to be compared to a tiny 2.6 percent to date.

As the IEA notes : ” The nearly 300 gigawatts of current wind power worldwide must increase eight- to ten-fold to achieve the roadmap’s vision with the more than USD 78 billion in investment in 2012 progressively reaching USD 150 billion per year. “

A 2009 document from this agency forecast 12 percent of wind power by 2050. I wonder what the IEA will forecast in 2016… Several factors explain this important increase.

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IEA presents four energy policies to keep Earth cool

IEA Redrawing the energy climate mapAs I noted last week, the prestigious International Energy Agency reported that despite some emission reductions from the United States and Europe, the world keeps on spewing more and more gigatonnes of greenhouse gases.

Luckily, the IEA proposes in its latest report four energy policies that would cut by eight percent the 2020 emissions compared to a business as usual scenario. This would amount to 3.1 Gt CO2 equivalent.

While these actions are not exactly what the worlds need to keep its climate as cool as it should be, they could be done at no net economic cost.

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