According to the International Energy Agency’s newest projection, transport and energy will be significantly greener than they are now by 2030. Consider doubling the number of electric vehicles on the road. Renewables account for half of the global electricity mix. Solar panels alone provide more electricity than the whole US power industry today.
That’s the image painted by the International Energy Agency (IEA) in its World Energy Outlook, which was released earlier this week and is based on nations’ current energy policy. Following the oil crises of the 1970s, the International Energy Agency (IEA) was formed to assist preserve global energy supply. Now, strengthening energy systems entails bringing renewables online to avert more catastrophic climate change — especially as climate-fueled calamities such as heatwaves and storms continue to endanger power networks throughout the world.
“The transition to clean energy is happening all over the world, and it is unstoppable.” It’s not a question of ‘if,’ but of ‘when,’ and the sooner the better for all of us,” IEA executive director Fatih Birol stated in a news statement.
The new cheapest energy source
With renewables becoming the cheapest energy source, solar and wind energy are weakening the grip of fossil fuels on the global economy. According to the IEA’s latest Outlook, demand for coal, oil, and gas is likely to peak this decade. This is the first time the agency has projected such outcome in policy evaluation reports. According to energy think tank Ember, the IEA’s Outlook also reveals that countries now expect to install almost two-thirds more renewable energy by 2030 than they did this time last year.
To reduce pollution from homes, buildings, and transportation, everything from automobiles to heating and cooling systems will need to be electrified. The IEA now predicts that electric heat pumps will outsell fossil fuel boilers by the end of the decade. And it has already witnessed an increase in the adoption of electric vehicles, with EVs accounting for one in every five automobiles sold this year, up from one in every 25 in 2020.
New, greener paths for fighting the global warming
All of this is good news for politicians working to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change. The Paris Agreement commits over 200 nations to cooperating to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. It’s a target that would avoid flooding, heatwaves, wildfires, and other climate-related disasters from worsening.
Despite this progress, the IEA study states that the transition to renewable energy must be accelerated in order to fulfil the target. According to the IEA, governments must quadruple renewable energy capacity globally and triple investments in clean energy in developing economies to be effective.
For now, the globe is still on course to see around 2.4 degrees of global warming this century. Furthermore, the analysis indicates a probable oversupply in fossil gas supplies, which contradicts global climate goals. Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine fueled worries of gas shortages, there has been a spike in new LNG projects, which may provide the equivalent of roughly half of today’s total world LNG supply by 2030.
Meanwhile, world leaders will meet in Dubai in December for a United Nations climate meeting, where a worldwide agreement to phase out fossil fuels might be discussed.
“Nations must come together to secure agreement on a fast, fair phaseout of fossil fuels, alongside a massive ramp-up of renewable energy and energy efficiency,” Union of Concerned Scientists policy director and lead economist Rachel Cleetus said in an emailed statement.