IEA: Pledges for climate negotiations not yet enough, governments must increase ambition

Posted on 15 June 2015

Current plans and pledges to do more later on are not yet enough to do the job on climate
(Switzerland, 15 June, 2015) – New climate plans proposed by large energy-using countries will see the world’s carbon budget, a cumulative emissions limit to stay below 2 degree global warming, depleted in just 25 years, resulting in even more climate instability and impacts.
The climate plans – called Intended Nationally Determined Contributions –will be the foundation of a new global climate agreement due to be agreed later this year in Paris.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) makes these findings in a new report, Special Report on Energy and Climate Change, released today.
Samantha Smith, leader of WWF’s Global Climate and Energy Initiative, says, “The IEA’s analysis confirms what scientists and civil society have said for a while: Countries need to cut emissions more, and they need to cut them more immediately so that we do not face really dangerous climate change. Current plans and pledges to do more later on are not yet enough to do the job on climate.”
WWF supports the IEA’s proposal to target five energy policies as a way to speed up and increase emissions cuts. Those include significant new legislation and standards for energy efficiency in various sectors, phasing out inefficient coal-fired power stations and all fossil fuel subsidies by 2030, as well as increasing investment into renewables and addressing often ignored climate pollution by powerful methane from shale and conventional gas and oil drilling.
WWF Director of Global Energy Policy Dr Stephan Singer says while WWF doesn’t agree with all the details and the level of ambition proposed by the IEA’s policies, “we do agree that actions in these five energy policy sectors will help to keep a global peak in emissions by 2020 within reach. This is what scientists tell us is necessary to fight climate change.”
Singer says the energy transition must be supported by clear policies and plans to give certainty to the energy sector, as is suggested in the report. “We are particularly happy that the IEA’s key recommendations focus on what works - energy efficiency and renewables - rather than on vague ‘low carbon technologies.’ The latter often means problematic climate ‘solutions’ like nuclear, carbon capture and storage at scale, and gas,” he said.
Smith said the report’s conclusion must be kept top of mind by world leaders as they plan their response to the planetary emergency. “The IEA says the world must quickly learn to live within its means if this generation is to pass it on to the next with a clear conscience. We couldn’t agree more.”
For further information, contact:
Mandy Jean Woods / @MandyJeanWoods  / +27 72 393 0027
Samantha Smith  / @pandaclimate / +47 450 22 149
Dr Stephan Singer ssigner@wwf.epo
About WWF - WWF's mission is to stop the degradation of the earth's natural environment and to build a future in which humans live in harmony with nature. The Global Climate & Energy Initiative (GCEI) is WWF’s global programme addressing climate change, promoting renewable and sustainable energy, scaling up green finance, engaging the private sector and working nationally and internationally on implementing low carbon, climate resilient development.
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