According to the analysis by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) scaling-up renewable energy combined with electrification could deliver more than 75% of the energy related emission reductions needed to meet global climate goals. The report shows that pathways to meet 86 per cent of global power demand with renewable energy exist. Based on the assumption that electricity would cover half of the global final energy mix and global power supply would more than double over this period, with the bulk of it generated from renewable energy, mostly solar PV and wind.
An accelerated energy transition in line with the Roadmap 2050 would also save the global economy up to USD 160 trillion cumulatively over the next 30 years in avoided health costs, energy subsidies and climate damages. Every dollar spent on energy transition would pay off up to seven times. The global economy would grow by 2.5 per cent in 2050. However, climate damages can lead to significant socio-economic losses.
IRENA’s roadmap recommends that national policy should focus on zero-carbon long-term strategies. It also highlights the need to boost and harness systemic innovation. This includes fostering smarter energy systems through digitalization as well as the coupling of end-use sectors, particularly transport, and heating and cooling, via greater electrification, promoting decentralisation and designing flexible power grids.
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