Promoting sustainable development and combating climate change have become integral aspects of energy planning, analysis and policy making. Because energy accounts for two-thirds of total greenhouse gas emissions and 80% of CO2, any effort to reduce emissions and mitigate climate change must include the energy sector.
For these reasons, it is more urgent than ever that the world comes together to fight climate change, by investing in clean energy and developing innovative clean technologies.
Consequently, the G7 will be working together on climate change and clean energy as key policies to tackle as part of this year´s G7 Summit Agenda.
How can the G7 better facilitate the transition to a clean energy economy?
Following its commitment to phase out fossil fuel subsidies by 2025, the G7 must now present a detailed road-map on how G7 members intend to meet this commitment and accelerate phase-out timelines. As G7 President, it is incumbent upon Canada to lead by example and agree to a peer review of its fossil fuel subsidies under the G20 process.
Where does the G7 and G20 stand in terms of fossil fuel subsidies?
“Subsidizing fossil fuel companies in the face of rapid climate change is like spraying jet fuel on a burning home. To put out the fire, we must first stop making the problem worse.” (Alex Doukas, Senior Campaigner at Oil Change International).
Canada, this year’s G7 host, has demonstrated leadership on this issue by recently slashing some key subsidies to the oil and gas industry. The G7 Summit is a golden opportunity to show further, strong climate leadership and respect for taxpayer money by promoting this issue on the G7´s agenda, and by ending all fossil fuel handouts, pushing the rest of the G7 to follow suit.
This is because the benefits of fully transitioning to a clean energy economy should be glaringly obvious to policymakers. That turning to renewables for new power generation is not simply an environmentally conscious decision, it is now – overwhelmingly – a smart economic one.
How is the renewable energy industry evolving in helping us combat these harmful subsidies?
According to a new report, renewable energy is set to be cheaper than fossil fuels by 2020. “This new dynamic signals a significant shift in the energy paradigm,” said Adnan Amin, director-general of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), which published the report.
What is the future outlook for the Energy Transition? Is a 100% Renewable Scenario Possible?
Looking further ahead, another new study finds that countries around the world could shift their economies entirely to renewable energy sources, such as solar, wind and hydroelectric, by the year 2050.
“The idea here is to electrify all energy sectors — transportation, heating, cooling, industry, agriculture, forestry, and fishing — and provide that electricity with 100 percent wind, water and solar power,” says Mark Z. Jacobson, a professor of civil and environmental engineering at Stanford and one of the authors of the report. “We want [to see] 80 percent of it by 2030 and 100 percent by 2050. … It is a challenge, but it’s very important to do,” he insists.
In summary, it is worth noting that we have only a very short period to make the changes pledged under the Paris Agreement to save the Earth from irreversible climate change damage. To do that, the G7 must increase its ambition in ending fossil fuel subsidies and do much more to support the unstoppable Clean Energy Transition that is underway.
CCTNE, distributed through official channels, will be supporting this year’s G7 Summit in Charlevoix, Quebec. As part of our purpose in creating meaningful engagement between key stakeholders, we would welcome relevant industry solution providers to contribute thought leadership to this critical, strategic area.
To discuss the possibility of your company’s written advocacy contribution, as per this recent example, please contact:
James D. Butler
Business Development Director
World News – Climate Change – The New Economy Ltd (CCTNE)
Main office – 75, Albany Mansions, London, SW11 4PQ
Mobile: +44 7432 740 836
* Since 2008, CCTNE – ‘Climate Change the New Economy’ has promoted independent and informed discussion on issues related to climate change and sustainable development, through high quality publications aimed at political business leaders and opinion formers. CCTNE is the only publication focussed on this crucial subject matter present at the G7 Summits. Our purpose & value are two-fold: 1) to deliver effective thought-leadership through our proven advocacy platform 2) ensure as wide a reach as possible via our unique, extensive global distribution ‘hard-copy’ network & associated on-line platforms.