The UNEP 2021 Production Gap Report finds that governments’ fossil fuel production plans are dangerously out of sync with Paris limits. The Report “tracks the discrepancy between governments’ planned fossil fuel production and global production levels consistent with limiting warming to 1.5°C or 2°C,” says the UNEP press release.
Fossils Out of Sync with Paris 1.5°C
“Despite increased climate ambitions and net-zero commitments, governments still plan to produce more than double the amount of fossil fuels in 2030 than what would be consistent with limiting global warming to 1.5°C and 45% more than consistent with limiting warming to 2°C,” according to the report.
The main findings include: (sourced from the press release)
- The world’s governments plan to produce around 110% more fossil fuels in 2030 than would be consistent with limiting warming to 1.5°C, and 45% more than consistent with 2°C. The size of the production gap has remained largely unchanged compared to our prior assessments.
- Governments’ production plans and projections would lead to about 240% more coal, 57% more oil, and 71% more gas in 2030 than would be consistent with limiting global warming to 1.5°C.
- Global gas production is projected to increase the most between 2020 and 2040 based on governments’ plans. This continued, long-term global expansion in gas production is inconsistent with the Paris Agreement’s temperature limits.
- Countries have directed over USD 300 billion in new funds towards fossil fuel activities since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic — more than they have towards clean energy.
- In contrast, international public finance for production of fossil fuels from G20 countries and major multilateral development banks (MDBs) has significantly decreased in recent years; one-third of MDBs and G20 development finance institutions (DFIs) by asset size have adopted policies that exclude fossil fuel production activities from future finance.
- Verifiable and comparable information on fossil fuel production and support — from both governments and companies — is essential to addressing the production gap.
Production Gap Report 2021
Oct 20, 2021
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Meanwhile in Canada
In the report Canada shows up as the world’s fourth-biggest oil and gas producer, and global fossil fuel production in 2030 will still be more than double the amount that would match a 1.5°C climate pathway, according to the 2021 Production Gap Report by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP),” writes Mitchell Beer in The Energy Mix.
IEA calls for Faster Fossil Phaseout
In yet another recent article, Beer focused on the IEA’s (International Energy Agency) call for a much “faster fossil phaseout and more renewables investment to keep 1.5°C withing reach.” Current climate pledges “cover less than 20% of the gap in emissions reductions that needs to be closed by 2030 to keep a 1.5°C path within reach,” says the IEA World Energy Outlook report.”
To shift those trends, the IEA Report calls for: (excerpt from The Energy Mix)
• A doubling of countries’ current commitments to deploy photovoltaic solar and wind, along with a “huge buildout” of grid infrastructure, greater flexibility in electricity systems, more reliance on hydropower, a rapid coal phaseout, electrification of transportation and space heat, and “use of nuclear power where acceptable”;
• A “relentless” focus on energy efficiency, making better use of materials and shifting behaviours to speed the reduction in the amount of energy the global economy uses for each unit of output it produces;
• Rapid methane reductions as a “key tool to limit near-term global warming”;
• A “big boost” to clean energy innovation, focused on technologies like hydrogen, low-carbon fuels, and carbon capture, utilization, and storage—particularly to drive emission reductions in energy-intensive industries like steel and cement, and in long-haul transport. While “all the technologies needed to achieve deep emissions cuts to 2030 are available,” the IEA says, nearly half of the reductions required by 2050 “come from technologies that today are at the demonstration or prototype stage.”
“Every data point showing the speed of change in energy can be countered by another showing the stubbornness of the status quo…for all the advances being made by renewables and electric mobility, 2021 is seeing a large rebound in coal and oil use. Largely for this reason, it is also seeing the second-largest annual increase in CO2 emissions in history.” — IEA
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