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The transition must speed up, says IEA Chief

At the same time as the world is working to transition away from fossil energy, a dramatic energy crisis is taking place. According to the IEA director, this is the first truly global energy crisis. Photo: Friends Of Europe/Flickr.
By Linea Bancel|Published 20 September 2022|Category: News

IEA Chief Fatih Birol worries that the global transition will be postponed for more than a decade if the world does not collaborate better. Energy Valley members are working together to reach the net zero goals. 

During the climate summit in Glasgow, the Breakthrough Agenda was launched by the United Kingdom and a coalition of 42 world leaders. This agenda provides a framework for countries and businesses to join up and strengthen their actions every year.

(E24 reported this first) *Article in Norwegian*

Now the International Energy Agency (IEA), the International Agency for Renewable Energy (Irena), and the UN are presenting a report that takes the pulse of the transition globally. The report shows that international cooperation has been too poor so far and that this could threaten the transition.

“Through international cooperation, we can adapt faster, cheaper, and easier for everyone, says IEA Chief Dr. Fatih Birol, in a press release. “Without such cooperation, the transition to net zero emissions can be much more challenging, and it can be postponed by several decades”, he says.

Reaching net zero together

Energy Valley members are interested in finding business opportunities in a net zero future. Through the Net Zero project, members meet to discuss the opportunities, challenges, and risks in a net zero future.

“Everyone is talking about net zero and their ambitious targets, but to reach these targets, the energy sector is dependent on the supplier industry to find solutions”, says Senior Manager at Capgemini Invent Norway Øyvind Eikeland, who is leading the project.

The project aims to restructure the Norwegian supplier industry in line with the large energy companies’ net-zero strategies, turning a CO2-intensive value chain into a competitive advantage for increased exports from Norway, as an energy nation, and the companies in the cluster. While also enabling the suppliers to contribute towards reduced emissions in line with national and global reduction goals and report this.

The Net Zero Project also has transfer value to industries other than the supplier industry, and there are plans to expand the project to become a national project for all Norwegian supplier industries.

Interested in being a part of the project? Contact Øyvind Eikeland.

Members of Energy Valley sharing their thoughts and experiences with working to reach net zero. Photo: Linea Bancel.

In the report from the IEA, Irena and the UN present 25 concrete recommendations relating to international cooperation, which can help to ensure more renewable energy, green hydrogen, and fossil-free steel, among other things, writes E24. 

According to the report, the capacity of renewable energy has increased by 130 percent in the last decade, while non-renewable energy sources increased by 24 percent. Large amounts of new renewable power are required to reach a goal of net zero emissions by 2050.

The IEA has previously calculated that the world needs to deploy 630 gigawatts of solar power and 390 gigawatts of wind power every year until 2030 to succeed. That is four times more than what is being built every year now.

Cooperation can help cut costs

The report covers, among other things, how international cooperation can ensure economies of scale and help trigger cost cuts in technologies such as hydrogen and fossil-free steel. “This can make the transition go faster”, says Simon Sharpe of the UN’s Climate Champions team, which has helped prepare the report.

For example, it can cost billions of dollars to build out a plant for fossil-free steel, and this is the most demanding thing for each individual company 
to finance, Sharpe points out. But if the world manages to cooperate, the costs of such technologies can be cut more quickly, he believes. "This must 
be at the core of our work", says Sharpe.