IEA: INDCs Could Triple Energy Intensity Improvement
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Full implementation of the intended nationally determined contributions (INDCs) submitted to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) by mid-October would decouple power sector emissions from electricity demand, according to a special briefing by the International Energy Agency (IEA).

However, based on IEA's estimates, the cumulative effect of implementing all INDCs submitted by mid-October also would lead to an average global temperature increase of around 2.7°C, which falls short of the “major course correction necessary” to stay below an average global temperature rise of 2°C.

IEA21 October 2015: Full implementation of the intended nationally determined contributions (INDCs) submitted to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) by mid-October would decouple power sector emissions from electricity demand, according to a special briefing by the International Energy Agency (IEA). However, based on IEA’s estimates, the cumulative effect of implementing all INDCs submitted by mid-October also would lead to an average global temperature increase of around 2.7°C, which falls short of the “major course correction necessary” to stay below an average global temperature rise of 2°C.

IEA’s ‘Energy and Climate Change: World Energy Outlook Special Briefing for COP21′ analyzes INDCs submitted by more than 150 countries, accounting for close to 90% of global energy-related greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and assesses in particular their energy sector-related impacts. It also updates the findings of IEA’S World Energy Outlook Special Report on Energy and Climate Change from June 2015.

According to the briefing, given that energy production and use account for two-thirds of global GHG emissions, “actions in the energy sector can make or break efforts to achieve the world’s agreed climate goal” of staying below a 2°C temperature rise. The briefing examines what the energy sector will look like globally in 2030 if all INDCs are fully implemented, and whether this will place the energy sector on a path consistent with the 2°C goal.

The IEA finds that all INDCs submitted by mid-October take into account energy sector emissions, and many include energy sector-related targets or actions. If implemented, the INDCs will lead to an improvement of global energy intensity at a rate almost three times faster than the rate since 2000. Emissions will either plateau or decline by 2030 in countries accounting for more than half of global economic activity at present. Of new electricity generation through 2030, 70% will be low-carbon.

The IEA estimates that the full implementation of the INDCs will require US$13.5 trillion in investments in energy efficiency and low-carbon technologies through 2030.

In addition to “a strong and clear signal” from the Paris Climate Change Conference in December 2015, reaching the 2°C goal will require innovation in the energy sector, and deployment of new and emerging energy sector technologies, according to IEA. [IEA Press Release] [Publication: Energy and Climate Change: World Energy Outlook Special Briefing for COP21] [IISD RS Story on IEA WEO June Special Report]


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