Tuesday

18th Sep 2018

Global energy body voices concern on security, CO2

  • Coal plant in Germany: the CO2-heavy fuel will still be 25% of the global energy mix in 2040 (Photo: Frank Kehren)

The International Energy Agency (IEA) has voiced concern on security of supply, greenhouse gas emissions, and the future of nuclear power over the next two decades.

“The global energy system is in danger of falling short of the hopes and expectations placed upon it”, the Paris-based intergovernmental body said in its annual World Energy Outlook, published on Wednesday (12 November).

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

The report contains projections up to 2040.

It expects world energy demand to increase by 37 percent by that year. Most of the growth in demand will come from Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America.

“By 2040, the world’s energy supply mix divides into four almost-equal parts: oil, gas, coal, and low-carbon sources.”

Low-carbon sources include renewable energy like wind and solar power, but also nuclear power.

Energy security is under pressure because of the Russia-Ukraine crisis and because unrest in the Middle East “has rarely been greater [than] since the oil shocks in the 1970s”.

The IEA also raised the alarm on the world's ability to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, which feed global warming.

The UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change estimates the world cannot emit more than 1,000 gigatonnes of CO2 if it is to limit the global temperature increase to 2 degrees Celsius.

“This entire budget [of 1,000 gigatonnes] will be used up by 2040 in our central scenario”, the IEA noted.

“Since emissions are not going to drop suddenly to zero once this point is reached, it is clear that the 2 °C objective requires urgent action to steer the energy system onto a safer path.”

Otherwise, the world is “on a path consistent with a long-term global average temperature increase of 3.6 °C”.

At the end of 2015 in Paris, world leaders hope to reach agreement on binding targets to reduce greenhouse emissions.

But the IEA remarked that the “point of departure for the climate negotiations, due to reach a climax in 2015, is not encouraging”.

It also said that by 2040 nuclear power generation in the EU will fall by 10 percent and “the challenge to replace the shortfall in generation [with alternative sources] is especially acute in Europe”.

Several European countries are phasing out nuclear plants.

Of the 434 facilities which were operational last year, almost 200 will be shut down in the coming 26 years.

The decommissioning will cost over $100 billion, the IEA calculates, advising governments and companies to start budgeting for the changes.

“Considerable uncertainties remain about these costs, reflecting the relatively limited experience to date in dismantling and decontaminating reactors and restoring sites for other uses”.

The International Energy Agency was founded 40 years ago, after the Middle East oil crises. It has 29 member states, 20 of them EU members.

Opinion

EU urgently needs real energy union

Rising risks from beyond our borders and challenges from within can be tackled in a comprehensive approach to the EU's energy needs.

EU promotes 'Egypt model' to reduce migrant numbers

EU council president Donald Tusk wants to discuss deepening relations with authoritarian Egypt, as a model of migrant reduction, with EU heads of state and government at a meeting in Salzburg, Austria on Wednesday.

Interview

New book: Why war is coming

War is the likely outcome of current geopolitical trends - the decline of democracy and rise of authoritarian nationalism - says Belgian writer Koert Debeuf in his new book 'Tribalisation', to be launched in New York this week.

News in Brief

  1. EU investigating BMW, Daimler and VW 'collusion'
  2. Spain wants special Gibraltar chapter in Brexit deal
  3. Italy cancels Vienna talks over South Tyrol 'dual citizenship'
  4. Britain will not accept Brexit deal with Irish Sea border
  5. Slovakia seeks witness to journalist killing
  6. Finland's Stubb considers running for EU commission job
  7. Romania ponders anti same-sex marriage referendum
  8. EU lawyers back Slovenia in Croatia border dispute

Interview

New book: Why war is coming

War is the likely outcome of current geopolitical trends - the decline of democracy and rise of authoritarian nationalism - says Belgian writer Koert Debeuf in his new book 'Tribalisation', to be launched in New York this week.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSThe Nordic gender effect goes international
  2. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSPaula Lehtomaki from Finland elected as the Council's first female Secretary General
  3. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSNordic design sets the stage at COP24, running a competition for sustainable chairs.
  4. Counter BalanceIn Kenya, a motorway funded by the European Investment Bank runs over roadside dwellers
  5. ACCACompany Law Package: Making the Best of Digital and Cross Border Mobility,
  6. IPHRCivil Society Worried About Shortcomings in EU-Kyrgyzstan Human Rights Dialogue
  7. UNESDAThe European Soft Drinks Industry Supports over 1.7 Million Jobs
  8. Mission of China to the EUJointly Building Belt and Road Initiative Leads to a Better Future for All
  9. IPHRCivil society asks PACE to appoint Rapporteur to probe issue of political prisoners in Azerbaijan
  10. ACCASocial Mobility – How Can We Increase Opportunities Through Training and Education?
  11. Nordic Council of MinistersEnergy Solutions for a Greener Tomorrow
  12. UNICEFWhat Kind of Europe Do Children Want? Unicef & Eurochild Launch Survey on the Europe Kids Want

Latest News

  1. EU promotes 'Egypt model' to reduce migrant numbers
  2. Tensions mount over Kosovo-Serbia deal
  3. New book: Why war is coming
  4. EU parliament will not budge on office expenses
  5. Why Orban's project to reshape EU politics will be unsuccessful
  6. 10 years after Lehman Brothers what has changed for EU consumers?
  7. Sefcovic launches bid to be EU Commission president
  8. Is Russia blackmailing the Council of Europe?

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us