The International Energy Agency (IEA)
has today released a major new report warning that urgent action is required before 2020
to curb global greenhouse gas emissions if the world is to have any chance of limiting average temperature increases to two degrees Centigrade.
The report, entitled Redrawing the Energy Climate Map
, argues that, despite progress in the US and EU to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and a slowing of emissions growth in China, global carbon emissions still rose 1.4 per cent in 2012, putting the world on track for 3.6 to 5.3 degrees of warming
by the end of the century.
The report calculates that delaying action to address climate change will lead to higher costs for the energy industry as climate impacts become more severe and the imperative to decarbonise becomes more acute post 2020.
"Delaying stronger climate action to 2020 would come at a cost to the energy sector: $1.5tr
in low-carbon investments would be avoided before 2020, but $5tr
in additional investments would be required thereafter to get the world back on track," said Van der Hoeven.
"The question is not whether we can afford the necessary investments given the current economic climate. The fact is we simply cannot afford to delay."
It outlines how more
ambitious energy efficiency
standards and financing schemes
for buildings, appliances and transport could deliver around 1.5 gigatonnes of carbon emissions savings, while targeted action to phase out
the least efficient coal-fired
power plants, reduce methane emissions from the oil and gas industry, and partially phase out fossil fuel subsidies
can all help cut emissions at no net cost to the fragile global economy