Posted on 13 April 2014
UN climate panel report highlights the need for increased renewable energy investment
Berlin – WWF supports a call in a major UN scientific report released today that the world should more than triple investments in sustainable, safe low-carbon energy sources as the main measure to mitigate climate change.
The report, agreed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), says that the world should triple or quadruple investments in clean energy solutions. WWF goes further, saying that the overwhelming majority of new investments should be made in renewable energy and energy efficiency.
The report finds that mitigation of climate change will have limited economic impact in the years ahead compared to the very significant costs of inaction. The report also finds that delaying actions to mitigate climate change will substantially increase the difficulty of the transition to lower emissions levels in the future.
WWF echoes the IPCC findings and renews its call for increased investments in renewable sources of energy.
“The longer we delay on tackling climate change, the harder the challenge becomes,” said Samantha Smith, leader of WWF’s Global Climate & Energy Initiative. “Transforming the world’s energy systems is now an urgent necessity if we are to avoid the dangerous impacts of global warming."
The IPCC report makes clear that immediate action on emissions is affordable and that delaying such action only further increases the costs. The energy sector is by far the largest emitter of greenhouse gases and is the key battleground for change.
“We know more effort is needed, and quickly. Delaying new mitigation efforts will make it much harder to transition the world’s energy systems to a sustainable, equitable and low-emissions future,” Smith said.
WWF concludes that the low-carbon emission scenarios proposed by the IPCC require that fossil fuels be left in the ground beginning now. This is both an investment and political challenge that must be met.
“Renewable energy can no longer be considered a niche market. Renewables must – and should – eventually take the full share of the global energy market within the next few decades,” said Dr Stephan Singer, WWF director of global energy policy.
WWF is currently running a global campaign, Seize Your Power, that is calling for investments to be pulled out of fossil fuels and switched into renewable energy. In light of the IPCC report, WWF continues to believe that investments in renewable energy must be scaled up rapidly.