Renewable energy and energy efficiency are the two key solutions to enable global energy transformation, the recent International Renewable Energy Agency's (IRENA) report showed on Friday.
According to the IRENA's Global Renewables Outlook: Energy Transformation 2050 report, energy-related CO2 emissions have risen by 1% per year over the past decade.
IRENA suggests that the time has come to invest trillions, not in fossil fuels, but in sustainable energy infrastructure to combat climate change and for the successful transition to renewables to enhance life quality.
The agency’s report which details its projections based on deeper carbonization in its Transforming Energy Scenario (TES), estimates that renewable energy and energy efficiency together can offer over 90% of the mitigation measures needed to reduce energy-related emissions.
The Deeper Decarbonization Perspective scenario, which is considered an ambitious, optimistic, and realistic energy transformation pathway, is based largely on renewable energy sources.
As per this perspective in the TES between 2016 and 2050, energy efficiency projects will be designated more investments of $43 trillion out of total investments of $130 trillion to move towards achieving net-zero emissions.
"This would set the energy system on the path needed to keep the rise in global temperatures to well below 2 degrees Celsius and towards 1.5 degrees Celsius during this century," the report indicates.
"While the health shock and oil slump may suppress emissions in 2020, a rebound would restore the long-term trend," the report highlighted.
- Jobs in energy efficiency
According to the report's TES, jobs in the overall energy sector – comprising transition-related technologies (renewable energy, energy efficiency, and power grids and energy flexibility), fossil fuels and nuclear power – could reach 100 million by 2050.
In 2050, energy efficiency alone could employ 21 million people globally, the agency forecast.
By Gulsen Cagatay and Firdevs Yuksel