The energy mix: We can tackle the climate challenge this decade
The energy sector can play a crucial role in cutting emissions The energy sector is responsible for more than two-thirds of global greenhouse gas emissions. To put the world firmly on track to meet international climate goals, industry and governments need to take action to make sure those emissions peak as soon as possible and then work hard toward putting them into steep decline. "This can be the decade when, together, we win the key battle in the climate fight by putting emissions on a sharp downward trajectory without jeopardizing energy security or economic growth," writes IEA Executive Director Dr Fatih Birol in a new op-ed article for CNN Business that highlights the energy sector’s crucial role in stemming emissions. Tackling the climate challenge will require using all energy technologies, and governments and companies already have the expertise, the experience and the resources to start making a difference now. But what is lacking today is the political momentum to bring about the policy changes that can accelerate clean energy transitions around the world. Bold climate action will require a new kind of political approach. The situation calls for a grand coalition encompassing governments, investors, companies and everyone genuinely committed to taking concrete measures to reduce global emissions. Read the full article here
The oil and gas industry must step up climate efforts
Oil and gas companies are facing a critical challenge as the world moves towards clean energy transitions, raising questions about their role in global efforts to tackle climate change. The industry needs to make clear what clean energy transitions mean for it – and what it can do to contribute to them, according to a new IEA report. While some oil and gas companies have taken steps to support efforts to combat climate change, the industry as a whole could play a much more significant role through its engineering capabilities, financial resources and project-management expertise, according to our Oil and Gas Industry in Energy Transitions report.The first immediate task for all parts of the industry is reducing the environmental footprint of their own operations. As of today, around 15% of global energy-related greenhouse gas emissions come from the process of getting oil and gas out of the ground and to consumers.
With their extensive know-how and deep pockets, oil and gas companies can play a crucial role in accelerating deployment of key renewable options such as offshore wind, while also enabling some key capital-intensive clean energy technologies – such as carbon capture, utilisation and storage and hydrogen – to reach maturity.
Read the press release or explore the report
Battery storage has a bright future in India
With ambitious plans to use renewables – particularly solar PV – to satisfy rapidly increasing electricity demand, India will be the country with the greatest need for additional power system flexibility in the coming decades. Batteries are ideally suited to meet these rising flexibility needs as they increase the value and competitiveness of solar PV by storing the electricity produced during sunny periods and feeding it back to the grid at another time. Battery storage, coupled with solar PV, also appears to be one of the most cost-effective ways of helping provide affordable electricity to isolated communities. Falling costs are a necessary condition for the widespread market-driven deployment of battery storage – but they are not sufficient on their own. Electricity market reforms rewarding the speed, accuracy and precision of battery storage systems would help their business case, and are crucial to incentivise investment. Batteries will be a special focus on this year’s World Energy Outlook 2020 series. Learn more in our latest commentary, "India is going to need more battery storage than any other country for its ambitious renewables push," by WEO Energy Analyst Claudia Pavarini.
How can consumers reduce the CO2 emissions associated with electricity use?
As our lives become more digital and interconnected, our dependence on electricity is increasing. And while electricity offers multiple advantages, consumers often do not realise the carbon footprint (or emissions footprint) of their own electricity use. Now, with rapid decarbonisation of electricity supply during certain hours of the day, the time of day when electricity is used becomes increasingly important for CO2 emissions. Electricity demand today is often concentrated at times of high CO2 intensity of electricity supply, and may become increasingly so with strong future demand growth for home appliances, air-conditioning and electric vehicles. However many consumers simply don’t know what hours of the day are the most CO2 intensive, and when are the best hours to use electricity. But thanks to digitalisation and the increased availability of data, new tools can help provide real-time information on the CO2 intensity of electricity in many areas, and help interested consumers to make the best decisions to reduce emissions and energy bills. Learn more in the recent commentary "Empowering electricity consumers to lower their carbon footprint" by IEA Chief Energy Modeler Laura Cozzi and Analyst Timothy Goodson
SPECIAL FOCUS ON DAVOS
During his engagements at the World Economic Forum’s annual gathering of global political and business leaders in Davos, IEA Executive Director Dr Fatih Birol stressed the IEA’s unparalleled capacity to provide the real-world solutions needed for secure and sustainable clean energy transitions. His meetings included bilateral conversations with Polish President Andrzej Duda and Indian Railways Minister Piyush Goyal. Dr Birol also took part in a panel discussion involving top energy and climate leaders – Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser, Siemens CEO Joe Kaeser and former UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres. The session focused on the challenges of addressing growing demand for energy while also reducing emissions.
Dr Birol also took part in meetings with government and industry leaders on key energy transition themes including energy efficiency, electricity security and clean hydrogen. Find his main takeaways from his conversations in Davos on LinkedIn later this week.
Changes in the average global emissions intensity of oil and natural gas operations in the Sustainable Development Scenario, 2018-2030
There are ample, cost-effective opportunities to bring down the emissions intensity of delivered oil and gas by minimising flaring of associated gas and venting of CO2, tackling methane emissions, and integrating renewables and low-carbon electricity into new upstream and liquefied natural gas (LNG) developments.
As of today, 15% of global energy-related greenhouse gas emissions come from the process of getting oil and gas out of the ground and to consumers. Reducing methane leaks to the atmosphere is the single most important and cost-effective way for the industry to bring down these emissions.
Learn more in The Oil and Gas Industry in Energy Transitions
ACRONYM EXPLAINER: OMR
Since its creation in 1983, the IEA's Oil Market Report (OMR) has been recognised as one of the most authoritative and timely sources of data, forecasts and analysis on the global oil market – including detailed statistics and commentary on oil supply, demand, inventories, prices and refining activity, as well as oil trade for OECD and selected non-OECD countries. This report, which is released near the middle of each month, provides all the data necessary to perform ad-hoc analysis and track oil market developments and to identify trends in production, consumption, refining, inventories in OECD countries and prices for both crude and products. Subscribers get immediate access to the OMR PDF and associated data tables in a single archive file at 10:00 AM Paris time on the day of release – and at the same time, the public is granted full access to the previous month’s report. Visit the Oil Market Report homepage to explore the latest report, become a subscriber, or explore the last few years of archived reports. We will be adding additional years of OMR archives over the coming months.
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