The International Energy Agency (IEA) has launched its World Energy Outlook 2016 (WEO) in Brussels.
This year’s edition focusses on the entry into force of the Paris climate change agreement which has “raised hopes and expectations of more concerted global efforts to tackle climate change,” the WEO says. The report holds analysis on how the commitments made will affect the energy sector, as well as examining concrete actions to reach climate objectives.
The report notes that the Paris Agreement is “at its heart an agreement about energy.” Changes in the energy sector are ongoing, it says, and growth in energy-related CO2 emissions stalled in 2015.
In general, countries are on track to meet their climate pledges, but while this will slow the rise in energy-related carbon emissions, it will not be sufficient to limit global warming to less than 2°C, it says.
Renewables, the report says, are the focus of many Paris pledges. By 2040 most renewable energy will be competitive without subsidies, and costs are projected to fall further. Average solar PV costs will call by 40-70% by 2040 and onshore wind costs will fall by a further 10-25%.
It also notes that the debate on renewables has moved the focus to their integration via power market designs and to electricity security.
On energy efficiency, the report says that more can be done to improve energy efficiency performance in electric motor systems including fans, compressors, pumps and refrigerators. These motors account for more than half of today’s electricity consumption.
The World Energy Outlook also foresees a rise in the worldwide stock of electric cars from 1.3 million in 2015 – already nearly double 2014 levels – to 30 million by 2025, and more than 150 million in 2040.