IEA: Nations Should Build on Economy-Related Greenhouse Gas Cuts

October 14, 2009

Under the current economic slowdown, global carbon dioxide emissions could fall by as much as 3% for 2009, and the International Energy Agency (IEA) believes that the world's nations can build on this carbon reduction to avoid the future impacts of climate change. To support ongoing climate negotiations, the IEA released a special early excerpt of its World Energy Outlook 2009, which finds that the economic slowdown has already put the world on a path to achieve 5% lower greenhouse gas emissions in 2020 than the IEA estimated just 12 months ago. To achieve greater reductions and shift the world toward low-carbon energy sources, the IEA estimates that $10.5 trillion will need to be pumped into the global energy sector over the next two decades. But the IEA also estimates that fuel savings across industry, transportation, and buildings will total $8.6 trillion over the same time period, nearly equaling the energy investment. The IEA scenario targets a stabilization of the climate at the equivalent to 450 parts per million of carbon dioxide, even though it allows an increase in emissions from developing countries. The IEA's entire World Energy Outlook 2009 will be released on November 10, but until then, see the IEA press release and the special climate change excerpt from the report (PDF 4.3 MB). Download Adobe Reader.