“Urgent action is needed” the three organizations say, noting that global trends are going in the wrong direction. Global growth in energy use is largely outpacing decarbonization. In 2018, the IEA reports, the primary energy intensity – an important indicator of how much energy the global economy uses – improved by just 1.2 percent, the slowest rate since 2010.
This slowing rate of improvement is alarming and in stark contrast to IEA’s call to governments to commit to a global annual improvement in energy intensity of 3 percent a year. In order to get energy efficiency progress back on track, the IEA has convened a high-level commission with senior politicians and business leaders.
“While carbon pricing and the removal of fossil-fuel subsidies are important to create a level playing field for energy efficiency, price and market signals alone are far from enough to steer the world in the right direction,” said Nils Borg, ECEEE’s executive director.
The high-level commission thus needs to revisit energy policies and come up with concrete proposals that can deliver efficiency improvements. It is expected to deliver its recommendations in the middle of 2020.
“This can be achieved by ambitious measures on many levels, including innovation research, financial support, improved understanding of consumer behavior and economic drivers as well as strict requirements for product, vehicle, and building performance,” says Steve Nadel, ACEEE’s executive director.
The three organizations promote principles, including energy sufficiency and the circular economy, that support the efficiency strategies. Equally important are the multiple benefits of energy and steady work to track progress.
The twelve strategies suggested by the organizations are designed to offer a comprehensive coverage of necessary policies to deliver efficiency around the globe. For each of the policies, the three organizations provide a brief overview of what is needed to realize that particular strategy.