energia clima


  • Investments to eliminate net emissions from the energy sector by 2050 are growing, but significant inequalities persist.
  • The complex but necessary challenge is the phasing out of fossil fuels with a just transition, specific strategies and the gradual removal of subsidies.
  • RES Foundation and YOUNGO Energy Working Group with #Time4Action launch the proposal to carry out specific negotiations on energy, arguing that they can be the key to convincing countries to commit more.

In Bonn, during the mid-term climate negotiations, an event co-organised by the International Energy Agency (IEA) and the Secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) took place on Thursday, with the participation of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and representatives of the COPs of 2023 (COP28 held in the United Arab Emirates), 2024 (COP29 held in Azerbaijan) and 2025 (COP30 held in Brazil).

The main objective is to monitor the progress made by the parties towards the main energy outcomes agreed at COP28, during the first Global Stocktake.

But the gaze is also turned to the future, with an analysis of the implications of such progress for governments committed to developing the next cycle of Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) under the Paris Agreement and the long-term low-emission development strategies (LT-LEDS) that will support them.

In Dubai, on the occasion of COP28, almost 200 countries made significant commitments on energy, with the aim of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and limiting global warming to 1.5°C. These commitments, which form a central element of the so-called “United Arab Emirates Consensus” (UAE Consensus), Paragraph 28 available here, include the ambitious goal of tripling renewable energy capacity and doubling energy efficiency progress by 2030 compared to 2022 levels. Added to this are the substantial reduction in methane emissions and the acceleration of the transition towards a future without fossil fuels.

The Bonn event provided the latest updates on the key indicators and metrics identified by the IEA in their latest report. This data will be used to monitor progress towards the above objectives and to support policy makers and stakeholders in the transition to clean energy, including through the NDC process. Furthermore, an online portal for the traceability of energy results will be launched, as a strategic tool for the international community. Unfortunately, however, the analysis of the presented NDCs highlighted that only 14 governments have included concrete objectives for renewables by 2030 and they would, in any case, be insufficient. Even considering other national plans (non-NDCs), we would reach 8000 GW of renewable capacity by 2030, mostly due to China’s commitments, but we would still be 3000 GW less than what is needed to stay below 1.5 °C degrees of global warming, as CAN International points out.

Photo: Anna Pelicci

The global energy landscape is at a crossroads.

The IEA highlights the urgency of accelerating the transition to clean energy. The COP28 energy package is generating significant changes: the ambitious goal is to achieve emissions neutrality in the energy sector by 2050, a goal that requires concrete collective commitment.

The reality of the facts highlights the need to redouble efforts. Although investments in clean energy are growing rapidly, with an amount of 2,000 billion dollars per year in 2024, to achieve the set objectives it is necessary for this figure to double by 2030, reaching four trillion dollars. The good news is that the trend appears in line with this trajectory.

However, inequalities remain. 85% of renewable energy investments are concentrated in China, the United States and the European Union, creating a significant gap in terms of equity. The remaining investments are mainly concentrated in Brazil and India. To close this gap and ensure a just and inclusive energy transition, a stronger commitment from rich countries and targeted support to poorer ones is needed, as Africa, Southeast Asia, Latin America and the Middle East continue to invest more in fossil fuels than in renewable sources.

Phasing out fossil fuels represents a complex but necessary challenge to achieve climate objectives. The IEA emphasizes that this transition must be fair and take into account the different realities and needs of individual countries.

There is no single recipe for phasing out; each fuel requires a specific strategy. Globally, subsidies for fossil fuels, which account for a significant share of energy inequality, are six times greater than those for renewable energy: these subsidies must be phased out and replaced by policies that promote clean energy and protect the most vulnerable communities. 

The challenge of implementation

Translating commitments into concrete actions is the challenge of implementation; committing is not enough. The real test for governments is the ability to translate the commitments made through the NDCs into concrete actions. In this context, Brazil, the country that will host COP30 in 2025, offers an illuminating example. Brazil already boasts a 50% share of renewable energy in the energy sector, which translates into 80% of electricity generation (verifiable on the IEA website). These data are indicative of the country’s determination to achieve the goals set in the NDCs and to be a model for other nations. The Brazilian representatives underline the crucial role of finance, carefully analyzed in the BTRs (Biennial Transparency Reports – we talked about it in this article).

The United Arab Emirates, which has committed to reaching 100GW of renewable energy by 2030, speaks in the room about its national objectives and plans as examples of concreteness. They also highlight the crucial importance of relying on accurate data, without which policies would remain abstract and unworkable. But IRENA, during the side event, counters that the lack of complete data should not be an obstacle to the implementation of policies. In fact, his experience in recent years demonstrates that the path can follow a double direction: from valid data to effective policies, but also from incisive policies to more solid data collection.

The IEA draws attention to the need to also consider unclean cooking (a term that refers to the use of inefficient and unhealthy fuels and technologies for cooking) as a key element of the energy transition, on which it has recently drawn up a report that can be consulted on their website. Although the challenge is complex, the Agency is working on concrete solutions. It is alarming to note that 2.3 billion people still do not have access to clean cooking methods, despite the 2.2 billion dollars allocated to address this issue during COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh by the GEF (Global Environment Facility) fund, the World Bank and the Global Alliance for Clean Cooking.

What is the position of young people on the topic?

The alarm cry launched by the RES Foundation and YOUNGO Energy Working Group with #Time4Action is clear: specific negotiations on energy are needed.

The energy transition is fundamental to achieving the goal of net zero emissions, and cannot ignore the impact that policies have on people. Closing a coal mine, for example, could mean putting miners out of work. To move from “blue-collar workers” to “green-collar workers”, professional development and retraining are needed, as required by the 17th sustainable development goal. Furthermore, the cost of renewable energy for communities cannot be prohibitive. The energy problem is not only climate-related, but it also affects economics, health, justice, poverty and accessibility. Thematic negotiations could therefore be instrumental in convincing countries to commit more. Let’s also not forget that 80% of fossil fuels are burned to produce energy: this is exactly what we need to talk about. The future of energy, and therefore of the climate, depends on people’s sources of livelihood.

Article by Anna Pelicci, Italian Climate Network volunteer

Cover image: UNFCCC

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