Cities must take the lead in the transition to a low-carbon energy sector, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said today, highlighting that urban areas account for up to two-thirds of the potential to cost-effectively reduce global carbon emissions.
In its annual report, Energy Technology Perspectives 2016 (ETP 2016), the IEA offers long-term technology pathways that could limit the global temperature increase to no more than 2°C, in line with the goals set at the Paris climate conference (COP21) in December 2015. The most cost-effective approach involves deploying low-carbon options in cities, especially in emerging and developing economies.
“Cities today are home to about half the global population but represent almost two-thirds of global energy demand and 70% of carbon emissions from the energy sector, so they must play a leading role if COP21 commitments are to be achieved,” IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol said at the launch of the report during the Clean Energy Ministerial in San Francisco. “Because cities are centres of economic growth and innovation, they are ideal test-beds for new technologies – from more sustainable transport systems to smart grids – that will help lead the transition to a low-carbon energy sector.” Continue reading on the International Energy Agency website.