Business leaders and industry sets out pathway to halve emissions by 2040.
‘Despite the scale of the challenges facing us, we firmly believe the required transition is technically and economically achievable if immediate action is taken’ Lord Turner, ETC.
It is technically and economically feasible to grow economies while providing affordable, reliable and clean energy for all – all while meeting the Paris Agreement goal of limiting global warming to well below 2°C. These conclusions are not from a green NGO, but from a collection of individuals, including investors and representatives from incumbent energy companies including Shell, chaired by the former Chairman of the Financial Services Authority Lord Adair Turner, under the banner of the Energy Transitions Commission (ETC).
A report from the ETC: Better energy, greater prosperity, says that halving global carbon emissions by 2040 is achievable, but only if governments, investors and businesses begin acting now to accelerate a large energy transition. This means speeding up the rate of electrification, decarbonising heating and transport and improving the energy intensity of the economy – rapidly.
The report says that the proliferation of clean energy is unstoppable, due to the falling costs of renewables and battery storage technologies; and that there is untapped potential to improve the energy intensity of GDP through energy efficiency – with the right policy framework.
But it also says that action on developing other technologies, including bioenergy, hydrogen and carbon capture and storage (CCS) for energy and industry, is needed to drive complete decarbonisation. Fossil fuel use must also fall by 30% by 2040, even in a scenario with large-scale CCS deployment, according to the report. Unabated coal power needs to be reduce considerably.
‘We are ambitious but realistic’ said Lord Turner. ‘Despite the sale of the challenges facing us, we firmly believe the required transition is technically and economically achievable if immediate action is taken.’
China replaces the US as the most attractive place for renewables investors.
China’s National Energy Administration announced in January that it will spend $363bn on renewable power capacity by 2020 … leading to the creation of 13mn new jobs.
Generation revolution – power without coal.
The first full day since the industrial revolution in which no coal was burned to generate electricity in the UK – Friday 21 April – was widely reported. As the Electricity Control Room at the National Grid put it: ‘National Grid can confirm that for the past 24 hours, it has supplied GB’s electricity demand without the need for coal generation’.