The days of greenhouse gas emissions and global warming being an esoteric topic for scientists and considered only by high-ranking politicians are a thing of the past. Today they concern all of us, and especially in this industry, where we have the responsibility for putting in investments and rolling out technologies that should lead to a more sustainable use of energy and in turn a substantial reduction in carbon emissions and a slowing in the rate of global warming.
For this reason in its latest so-called ‘trilemma’ report, the World Energy Council (WEC) argues that the energy sector has a key part to play in driving the climate debate. [Five Steps To A Low Carbon Energy System] The investments are substantial and estimated for the next two decades at around US$48-53 trillion. However, for these investments to be delivered, the development of a clear climate framework and a global emissions target is essential, says the WEC.
The WEC goes on to propose that there should be proactive engagement between climate negotiators and industry implementers in order to ensure that measures are deliverable and targeted. This is key. Climate targets translate directly into renewable and other clean energy targets. Often in the past it appears that the climate targets, usually ever more aggressive, have been at the whim of politicians, leaving policy makers and industry scrambling to meet them. In the long run – for many, the 2050 timeframe – realistically deliverable targets, which can also be ambitious, have a far greater chance of being achieved.
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