The first annual Breakthrough Agenda Report, requested by 45 world leaders, delivers a progress report on the actions needed to deliver on the historic clean technology commitment by governments representing two-thirds of the global economy.
The Breakthrough Agenda, as the commitment is known, aims to align countries’ actions and coordinate investment to scale up deployment and drive down costs across five key sectors — power, road transport, steel, hydrogen and agriculture.
Together, these sectors account for nearly 60 per cent of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions today and could deliver the bulk of the emission reductions needed by 2030 in a pathway that would make a significant contribution to limiting global warming to a maximum of 1.5 degrees Celsius, in line with the Paris Agreement goals.
The report notes an increase in practical international cooperation in recent years, and progress in deploying the technologies needed, including a doubling of EVs sales in 2021 from the previous year, to a new record of 6.6 million; a forecast increase in global renewable capacity of eight per cent in 2022 — pushing through the 300GW mark for the first time and equivalent to powering approximately 225 million homes; and forecast global electricity generation cost reduction of at least $55 billion in 2022, based on new renewable capacity added in 2021.
However, the report also warns that far greater international cooperation is needed to get the world on track to meet its climate commitments.
“We are in the midst of the first truly global energy crisis, with devastating knock-on consequences across the world economy, especially in developing countries. Only by speeding up the transition to clean sustainable energy can we achieve lasting energy security,” said International Energy Agency (IEA) Executive Director Fatih Birol.
“Through international collaboration, we can make the transition quicker, cheaper and easier for everyone — on the back of faster innovation, greater economies of scale, bigger incentives to invest, level-playing fields and benefits that are shared across all parts of society.
“Without this collaboration, the transition to net zero emissions will be much more challenging and could be delayed by decades.”
IRENA Director-General Francesco La Camera said the energy and climate crisis has exposed the weaknesses and vulnerabilities of a system heavily reliant on fuels of the 20th century.
“Anything short of radical and immediate action will ultimately eliminate the chance of staying on the 1.5 degrees Celsius path.
“The Breakthrough Agenda and our joint report sends a strong signal ahead of COP27 that greater international collaboration can amplify ambition and accelerate progress. Advancing the transition to renewables is a strategic choice to bring affordable energy, jobs, economic growth and a cleaner environment to the people on the ground.”
The report puts forward 25 recommendations for leaders to discuss at the Global Clean Energy Action Forum and the 13th Clean Energy Ministerial to be held in Pittsburgh, the US, from Wednesday to Friday.