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Energy Transition : illusive progress

Macro Highlights - 3/27/2019

Energy Transition : illusive progress

Improved energy efficiency over the last 30 years, but a stagnant energy mix

  • To limit global warming to 1.5°C will require a 45% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2030 according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
  • Two driving forces will be essential to achieving this goal: an increase in the share of renewable energies in the energy mix and an improvement in energy efficiency
  • Since 1990, there has been visible progress in efficiency, which has increased 48% worldwide and 167% in China ...
  • ...but progress in the global energy mix is nonetheless disappointing. In 1990, 86.7% of energy consumption came from fossil fuels. In 2017, it was still at 85.1%
  • 2017 was a disappointing year in terms of the energy transition. The growth in worldwide energy and coal consumption accelerated and CO2 emissions increased ...
  • ... mainly due to the acceleration of global economic growth from 3.3% to 3.7% in 2017, fueled in large part by industrial activity

Which countries are the most advanced in relation to the energy transition?

    • We have developed an energy transition index that is based on four main components: energy consumption per person, CO2 emissions per person, the share of fossil energy in total energy consumption, and energy efficiency
    • According to our index, the most advanced countries in 2017 were Switzerland, Colombia and Sweden
    • Switzerland: Despite high primary energy consumption per capita, Switzerland's consumption of fossil fuels is only 50.5% and the country’s energy efficiency (GDP per unit of energy) is among the highest in the world
    • Colombia: Colombia owes its second place to a per-capita primary energy consumption well below the world average and a significant role played by hydroelectricity, accounting for 30.4% of its energy mix
    • Sweden: Sweden has been a pioneer in the energy transition. In 2017, fossil fuels accounted for only 32.6% of primary energy consumption. These results were achieved through innovative and inclusive regulations

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