Climate researchers and policy experts around the world applaud a study just released by the slow-moving International Energy Agency in Paris. “Pretty amazing,” said one of them. “It’s exhilarating,” said the other. The third called it “one of the most important climate analyzes of all time.”
The report provides a blueprint for how the global community can still achieve the 2015 Paris Agreement goal, which is to prevent the planet from warming above pre-industrial temperature by 1.5 ° C (2.7 ° F) . It must completely stop the exploration of new fossil fuels and accelerate the development of wind and solar energy at an alarming rate. Of course, even the analysts who were surprised by this investigation threw some bricks. Drawdown editor Paul Hawken was his own plan to tackle climate change. He asked bitterly, “Where have you been in the last 20 years?” He and others reminded us that long after the IEA could have supported renewable energy. , has been sold weakly. Nonetheless, climate connoisseurs predict that the report will help accelerate the replacement of fossil fuels with wind, solar, and other climate-friendly energy sources.
The King of Electricity
Since its inception in 1974, the IEA and its highly respected backbone of analysts have focused almost entirely on fossil fuels. Industrialized countries, including the United States, Japan, Turkey, Canada, and a dozen Western European countries, established the organization after the oil crisis in the early 1970s. Oil supplies from major producing countries have peaked and concerns about the 1973 Arab oil embargo have disrupted oil supplies. Fuel prices have skyrocketed. To ensure energy security in the future, the founding countries of the IEA need reliable statistics on energy supply and use.
Since the 1950s, scientists have expressed serious concerns about warming caused by burning oil, natural gas, and coal. Carbon-free technologies that could replace these fossil fuels, such as solar panels and windmills, became increasingly economical in the last decades of the 20th century. Proponents of renewables accuse the IEA of downplaying the viability of fossil-free energy long after its technical potential and feasibility became apparent.
“They underestimated renewable energy and overestimated oil reserves,” said Hawken.
Fatih Birol, who has been the executive director of the IEA since 2015, stated on his LinkedIn page that the new report is just a logical extension of his mission. “[F] For many years,” he wrote, “we have focused on shaping a secure and sustainable energy future for all, which requires a transition to clean energy.”
Front Page Live editor of the news website and former Department of Energy official Joe Romm, who has been paying close attention to climate policy for a long time, praised Birol and said he started as chief economist at the IEA 26 ago years and that changed the culture of a country. “A Conservative Organization for Industry”. Hurricane
is becoming increasingly dangerous.
Understand the connection to global warming.
The institutional attitude of the IEA appears to have undergone a major change in 2020. Its highly respected “World Energy Report” declares that solar energy is the “king of electricity” and is cheaper than electricity generated by gas or electricity. new coal-fired power plants. In that study, the IEA claimed that solar power generation is 2050% cheaper than it stated two years ago. And increase the forecast for solar power generation in 2040 by 43%.
On May 18, 2021, the IEA further changed its long-standing stance on raw fossil fuels. At the time of net zero emissions in 2050, he released a road map showing how countries around the world work together to achieve a 50% chance of achieving the 1.5°C target set by the Paris Agreement. Rohm said that the IEA’s more optimistic assessment of renewable energy reflects its belated “climate change is very serious” determination.
A solution by Laura Cozzi, Chief Energy Modeler of the International Energy Agency and Timur Gül, Head of Energy and Policy Department, wrote in a recent article that the new plan to tackle the climate crisis should not be seen as a solution. Instead, it aims to “clarify what it might mean in practice to achieve the ambition of achieving net zero net worth by 2050”. Two IEA officials explained that the
1.5°C Global Warming Special Report issued by the International Panel on Climate Change in 2018 considered 90 different energy routes, each with at least a 50/50 chance of achieving the Paris Agreement. s 1.5°C target. Among them, 18 scenarios achieve “net zero”, which means that by 2050, the amount of carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere will be balanced with the amount eliminated. The
IEA report covers
(picture source: IEA)
IPCC. Now IEA has set its sights on net zero emissions rather than actual emissions, because it is extremely difficult to maintain some necessary activities (such as air travel) without fossil fuels. The carbon dioxide released by some of these actions must be offset by other means. Although many climate researchers and activists have found that it is advisable to allow certain fossil fuels even after the middle of this century, some people worry about exceptions. For example, earlier this year, Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg warned her 5 million Twitter followers that the net goal was “an excuse to postpone actual action.”
Most scenarios in the 2018 IPCC study achieved net zero after the middle of this century. The IEA plans to achieve this goal in 2050 and keep the peak carbon dioxide in the atmosphere at a low level. Afterwards, the highest peak of the plan to achieve net zero emissions must be balanced by a period of large “negative emissions”, that is, more carbon dioxide is removed from the air than carbon dioxide is added. However, apart from planting trees, no large-scale negative emission technology has been tested. At the end of the 21st century, increasing forest cover may not be feasible because the land is not suitable and the climate is not. Rohm said that waiting to be rescued by technology that doesn’t exist yet is like trusting in a plan to deal with the most stubborn obstacles, saying “then a miracle will happen.” The IEA plan calls for relatively low negative emissions.
The road to 2050
The IEA report clearly states that it is necessary to reach net zero in the next 40 years