The annual report Tracking SDG7: The Energy Progress Report was recently presented. The report tracks global, regional and country progress on the Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG7) targets of access to electricity and clean cooking, renewable energy and energy efficiency. By doing so, Tracking SDG7 offers a clear picture of how far we still need to go to ensure clean, affordable energy for all by 2030.
Knowing where the world stands on SDG7 is especially important this year in the context of COVID-19 and the role energy access plays in fighting the pandemic. Health centres need reliable electricity to treat patients. Powered cold chains are needed to keep vaccines at the required temperatures as they are distributed to communities, both urban and rural. And access to clean cooking solutions reduces exposure to indoor air pollution that increases vulnerability to COVID-19 and other illnesses.
With less than a decade left to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), we have made significant progress toward SDG7 on affordable and clean energy for all. Globally, the population having access rose from 83 percent in 2010 to 90 percent in 2019, according to the report. In particular, electrification through decentralized renewable-based solutions gained momentum. The number of people connected to mini-grids has more than doubled between 2010 and 2019, growing from 5 to 11 million people.
However, despite this remarkable growth in electrification, we’re still falling short. The latest findings of Tracking SDG7 are worrying: 759 million people globally still lack access to electricity and 2.6 billion people are unable to cook cleanly and safely.
Download the report here.
Inequalities in energy access continue to persist despite tremendous progress. IRENA's Director-General, Francesco La Camera, calls for strengthened cooperation to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG7). "International support is failing to reach those farther behind," he said. Watch the full video here.
The SDG7 Technical Advisory Group (TAG), also produced the 2021 SDG7 Policy Briefs in Support of the High-Level Political Forum, Leveraging Energy Action for Advancing the Sustainable Development Goals, a clear set of policy recommendations for governments, donors and multilateral agencies.
Source and Image © SeforALL / Irena