Mitigation Update: Announcements and Reports Highlight Renewable and Clean Energy Prospects
UN Photo/Kibae Park
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The 'Global 100% Renewable Energy Platform’ was launched on the sidelines of the Bonn Climate Change Conference.

India announced its intention to ensure that all cars sold in the country will be electric, by 2030.

The Program on Forests (PROFOR) of the World Bank released the report, titled ‘Harnessing the Potential of Private Sector Engagement in Productive Forests for Green Growth’.

UN Environment and the African Development Bank (AfDB) published an Atlas describing Africa’s energy potential and opportunities for investment to meet its energy needs.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) released the 2017 ‘Tracking Clean Energy Progress (TCEP)’ report'.

18 May 2017: With the Bonn Climate Change Conference in full swing, this mitigation update focuses on new resources focus on renewable energy potential and progress, including reports on renewable energy opportunities in Africa and tracking progress on clean energy. A new report on mitigation benefits from forest-based supply chains in the economies of Colombia, Ethiopia, Mexico, Mozambique, Peru and Viet Nam has also been released. This update also features the launch of a renewable energy platform meant to support stakeholders in achieving a global, 100% renewable energy goal. In addition, India has announced that, by 2030, it will ensure that cars sold in the country are electric-powered.

Atlas Illustrates African Potential and Opportunities for Investment to Meet Energy Needs

UN Environment and the African Development Bank (AfDB) have released an Atlas describing Africa’s energy potential and opportunities for investment to meet its energy needs. The ‘Atlas of Africa Energy Resources’ examines the challenges and opportunities in providing Africa’s population with access to reliable, affordable and modern energy services, and advocates for investments in green energy infrastructure to enhance economic development and help the continent achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The publication highlights that: energy consumption in Africa is the lowest globally, and per capita consumption has barely changed since 2000; current energy production is insufficient to meet demand; about a third of the continent’s population lacks access to electricity; and 53% of the population depends on biomass for cooking, space heating and drying. The Atlas aims to facilitate access to information and energy data for all actors, including donors, African governments and the private sector. The Atlas was released on 4 May 2017 during the World Economic Forum on Africa, which convened Durban, South Africa, from 3-5 May 2017. [UN Press Release] [UN Environment Press Release] [Atlas of Africa Energy Resources]

IEA Tracks Progress across Technologies and Sectors towards Meeting Emission Reduction Targets

The International Energy Agency (IEA) released the 2017 ‘Tracking Clean Energy Progress (TCEP)’ report, which analyzes progress in clean energy sectors and technologies. Using benchmarks for 2025 modelled in ‘Energy Technology Perspectives 2017’ and milestones identified in ‘IEA Technology Roadmaps,’ the report determines whether a given technology, or energy savings and emissions reduction measure, will meet longer-term emissions objectives by 2060. According to an IEA press release, “In 2016, three of the 26 tracked technologies were on track towards a sustainable energy transition: onshore wind and solar, electric vehicles, and energy storage.” IEA noted that “while these technologies represent only a small share of the total energy system, they are rapidly scaling up and continue to strengthen their position as mainstream energy solutions.”

“In 2016, three of the 26 tracked technologies were on track towards a sustainable energy transition: onshore wind and solar, electric vehicles, and energy storage.”

The report, launched on the sidelines of the Bonn Climate Change Conference on 16 May, explains that further progress in these sectors and technologies will require significant scaling-up of public and private clean energy investment. The publication also addresses the lack of existing information on public and private investment patterns, and provides recommendations for going forward. [IEA Press Release] [Tracking Clean Energy Progress 2017]

Launch of the Global 100% Renewable Energy Platform

A multi-stakeholder platform connecting actors from civil society, business, government and science to jointly realize a global, 100% renewable energy goal was launched on 8 May 2017 on the sidelines of the Bonn Climate Change Conference. The ‘Global 100% Renewable Energy Platform’ is based on the principles of achieving: 100% renewable energy in power, heating/cooling, and transport sectors globally; 100% renewable energy-based investments in energy systems; and a decentralized, people-centered approach. Platform members also launched a ‘100% RE Building Blocks’ policy tool, which aims to help stakeholders implement the 100% renewable energy goal in their communities and requires change beyond a singular focus on energy technologies. The Platform is part of the ‘Global 100% RE’ campaign, which was launched in April 2013 in San Francisco, US. [UNFCCC Press Release] [Global 100% RE Story on Platform Launch] [Global 100% RE Website] [100% Building Blocks Policy Tool]

Electric Vehicles and Renewable Capacity in India

To improve air quality in a country where 2.3 million die every year from air pollution, Piyush Goyal, Minister of State with Independent Charge for Power, Coal, New and Renewable Energy and Mines, announced that India intends to ensure that all cars sold in the country will be electric, by 2030. The Minister made the statement during the Confederation of Indian Industry Annual Session 2017 in New Delhi.

The Government of India expects to subsidize the electric vehicle industry for two to three years to achieve this goal. Further, during the financial year 2016-2017, the Central Electricity Authority of India announced that the country installed more than twice as much renewable energy capacity as coal, with wind and solar energy dominating and renewable energy capacity now making up 17.5% of total installed capacity. India hopes to source 40% of its electricity demand from renewable energy by 2030. [Climate Action Press Release on Electric Vehicles in India] [Climate Action Press Release on Renewable Capacity]

How Productive Forests Foster Green Growth and Mitigate Climate Change

On forests, the Program on Forests (PROFOR) of the World Bank released the report, titled ‘Harnessing the Potential of Private Sector Engagement in Productive Forests for Green Growth.’ The publication explains how sustainably harvesting wood products can help satisfy demand while also mitigating climate change, providing jobs and conserving primary forests. The report estimates the potential mitigation benefits from forest-based supply chains in the economies of Colombia, Ethiopia, Mexico, Mozambique, Peru and Viet Nam, which combined, could sequester more than 150 million tons of CO2 by 2030.

The report argues that: governments must create an enabling environment through better law enforcement and governance; plantations will be key for renewable energy in the future; and private investors, rural communities and forest owners require technical assistance to assist with forest management and production, and better market access. The report was funded by the Climate Investment Funds (CIF) and PROFOR. [Report Webpage] [Harnessing the Potential of Private Sector Engagement in Productive Forests for Green Growth]


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