G20 leaders endorse IEA report on deployment of clean energy and energy efficiency technologies

While positive progress has been made with clean energy technologies, the world is still largely dependent on fossil fuels to satisfy growth in global energy demand.

10 November 2011

The leaders of the G20 group of industrialised nations, who met at a summit in Cannes on 3-4 November, endorsed a new IEA report entitled G20 Clean Energy, and Energy Efficiency Deployment and Policy Progress.

The report, which was prepared by the IEA in collaboration with the G20 Clean Energy and Energy Efficiency Working Group, provides an overview of clean energy and energy efficiency technology deployment and summarises support policies in place across G20 countries.

“We welcome the assessment of the countries’ current situation regarding the deployment of these [clean energy and energy efficiency] technologies as well as the on-going exercise of sharing best practices, as a basis for better policy making,” the leaders stated in the Cannes Summit Final Declaration.

The report found that:

  • deployment of clean energy technologies around the world is progressing rapidly
  • implementation of energy efficiency policies is improving
  • renewable energy technologies have seen significant growth rates in recent years (From 2005to 2010, wind power grew at an average rate of 27% per year, and solar photovoltaic at an average rate of 56%) and
  • governments are beginning to set goals to support the development of advanced vehicle markets. Advanced vehicles refers to electric (which are battery powered), plug-in hybrid (which uses two sources of power – most commonly gasoline and electric) and fuel cell models (which convert hydrogen into electricity)

Yet despite the positive progress, the report also stated that the world is still largely dependent on fossil fuels to satisfy growth in global energy demand, the report observed. In the past decade, coal has met nearly 50% of new electricity demand globally and oil currently accounts for 94% of energy supply in the transport sector.

The report noted that “improving end-use efficiency, enhancing the efficiency of fossil fuel based power generation, and supporting the widespread deployment of Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) will, therefore, also be crucial aspects of the transition to a cleaner energy future.”

The Deputy Executive Director of the IEA, Ambassador Richard Jones, emphasised the importance of G20 efforts. “The IEA welcomes this important collaboration with the G20. Enhanced deployment of clean energy technologies and of energy efficiency improvements offers energy security and environmental benefits,” he said.

“It will also enable cost savings over the medium and long term – an aspect that is particularly relevant at a time of economic uncertainty. We believe that enhanced policy assessment and analysis, building on this initial report, will enable governments to take more cost effective and efficient policy decisions.”

Photo: © GraphicObsession.

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