Working together to ensure reliable, affordable and clean energy

There is a pressing need to accelerate the development of low-carbon energy technologies in order to address the global challenges of energy security, climate change and economic growth. This challenge was acknowledged by ministers from G8 countries at their meeting in June 2008 in Aomori, Japan where they declared the wish to have IEA prepare roadmaps to advance innovative energy technology. It was reconfirmed by IEA member countries.

To achieve this ambitious goal, the IEA is developing a series of global low-carbon energy technology roadmaps covering the most important technologies. The IEA is leading the process, under international guidance and in close consultation with government and industry. The overall aim is to advance global development and uptake of key technologies to reach a 50% reduction in energy-related CO emissions by 2050. The roadmaps identify priority actions for governments, industry, financial partners and civil society that will advance technology development and uptake to achieve international climate change goals.

The vision for each of the IEA's roadmaps is based on the ETP 2°C Scenario (2DS). This scenario describes how technologies across all energy sectors may be transformed by 2050 to give an 80% chance of limiting average global temperature increase to 2°C. The 2DS sets the target of cutting energy-related CO emissions by more than half by 2050 (compared with 2009) and ensuring that they continue to fall thereafter.     

Each roadmap represents international consensus on milestones for technology development, legal/regulatory needs, investment requirements, public engagement/outreach and international collaboration. The following low-carbon technology roadmaps are now available:

The IEA has shared the roadmaps as input to a number of international for a, including the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Technology Mechanism discussions, the Major Economies Forum on Energy & Climate and Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM). The roadmaps were featured in the Energy Technology Perspectives publication.  Based on its experience, and to respond to requests for guidance, the IEA has developed an overview guide to developing and implementing Energy Technology Roadmaps that can be used by government and corporate stakeholders to use roadmaps as a strategic planning tool.

The first series of IEA technology-specific roadmaps are international in scope. Developing country and technology-specific roadmaps provide an opportunity to adapt IEA analysis, methodology and tools to regional context and objectives.  The IEA is working closely with countries to support their national roadmap efforts including the

In 2012, the IEA International Low-Carbon Energy Technology Platform launched a new initiative called the “How2Guide” that seeks to build on the IEA internationally-focused technology roadmaps and how-to-guide. This initiative's goal is to develop technology-specific policy and methodology guidance for roadmap development at the national level. 

The IEA is currently developing How2Guides for the following technologies and systems:

  • Smart Grids in Distribution Networks
  • Wind Energy
  • Bioenergy for Heat and Power

For more information on the IEA Technology Platform and its How2Guide initiatives, please visit this website.

For the latest on IEA energy technology activities and findings, subscribe to the free OPEN Energy Technology Bulletin.

To review the significant recent achievements of IEA’s multilateral technology initiatives, consult Energy Technology Initiatives

For questions or information: 

General information contact