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OUR VISION FOR ENERGY BY 2050

A sustainable energy system providing reliable and affordable net-zero carbon energy for all.

01

RELIABLE & AFFORDABLE ENERGY FOR ALL

02

DEMAND FOR AND DELIVERY OF NET ZERO CARBON ENERGY

03

AN EFFICIENT ELECTRIC ENERGY SYSTEM

04

BUILT ON THE FOUNDATIONS OF A JUST AND FAIR TRANSITION

KEY TRANSITIONS

ZERO-CARBON ELECTRICITY GENERATION TECHNOLOGIES ARE FURTHER INNOVATED AND ADOPTED GLOBALLY AT SPEED

  • Unabated fossil fuel generation is phased out, driven by the removal of fossil fuel subsidies, and the introduction of incentives for net-zero carbon energy and carbon pricing.
  • Financial institutions shift investments from fossil fuels to zero- and low-carbon energy sources.
  • Clean electricity generation technologies are rapidly scaled up around the world. Solar and wind expand exponentially to make up more than 60% of electricity generation by 2050, while other technologies also play a role.
  • Power grids manage increased supplies of renewable electricity through flexible solutions and energy storage technologies.
  • Policies ensure that suitable on and offshore areas are available to meet future demand for renewable energy generation, while respecting the rights of communities and protecting biodiversity.

NET-ZERO CARBON ENERGY BECOMES AFFORDABLE, RELIABLE AND RESILIENT

  • Business works with governments, civil society organizations, consumers, and other stakeholders to ensure that reliable, net-zero carbon energy services are accessible and affordable for all.
  • Incentive schemes, subsidies and initiatives help to foster significant investment in the infrastructure needed to provide reliable and resilient net-zero carbon energy across the globe.
  • Innovations in grid integration and energy storage help to ensure constant and reliable access to energy.
  • Business supports government and municipal leaders in incorporating resilience into new infrastructure planning, and collaborative action is taken to ensure existing energy systems and related public infrastructure are protected.

HEAVY INDUSTRIES AND HEAVY-DUTY TRANSPORT DECARBONIZE

  • With policy support, harder-to-abate heavy industry sectors decarbonize through a combination of materials efficiency and circularity, energy efficiency improvements, and innovative decarbonization technologies.
  • Alternative electro-fuels, such as low-carbon hydrogen and sustainable biomass or biogas, replace fossil fuels in industrial high heat-generating processes.
  • Heavy road transport, shipping, and aviation decarbonize through a combination of electric solutions, electro-fuels and sustainable low-carbon biofuels.
  • Where full decarbonization is not achievable, all carbon emissions are effectively captured, reused or stored.

UNAVOIDABLE EMISSIONS ARE TACKLED VIA NATURAL AND INDUSTRIAL CARBON REMOVAL AND STORAGE SOLUTIONS

  • Where technical or economic constraints mean that it remains unfeasible to eliminate residual emissions, carbon neutralization measures supplement, but do not substitute, science-based emissions reduction efforts.
  • Credible and reliable nature-based solutions, including avoided deforestation, reforestation, and afforestation projects, are deployed at scale. Nature-based solutions follow robust social and environmental principles, ensuring protection and restoration of naturally occurring ecosystems and biodiversity.
  • Carbon capture, usage, and storage technologies achieve scale as solutions for hard-to-abate sectors, supported by public policy and ongoing research and development. Opportunities for industrial symbiosis emerge, further enhancing economic viability.

ELECTRIFICATION, CIRCULARITY, AND DIGITIZATION MAKE ALL SECTORS HIGHLY ENERGY EFFICIENT

  • Energy efficiency improves exponentially across all sectors including transport, buildings, and industry, in part driven by a rapid increase in electrification. Electricity becomes the main energy carrier, accounting for over 50% of total final energy consumption by 2050.
  • Supply- and demand-side efficiencies are enabled through the digitization of the power sector through smart grid technologies and other emerging business models.
  • Shifts towards circular, sharing and service business models propel efficiencies and help to reduce emissions. The energy sector itself adopts more circular models in terms of the materials and fuels it uses.

SHIFTS IN BEHAVIOR AND DEMAND ACCELERATE THE TRANSITION TO NET-ZERO CARBON ENERGY

  • Decarbonizing the global energy system moves up the political agenda, driven by widespread public activism. This leads to more ambitious policy action to support zero-carbon energy carriers, including carbon pricing and energy taxation.
  • Businesses increasingly switch to zero-carbon energy.
  • Significant players in the global economy, including the financial sector, continue to divest from fossil fuel-related activity to support the transition to net-zero carbon energy sources.
  • Public awareness campaigns, education initiatives, and advertising empower people with better information about where their energy comes from and its impacts. Technological developments and financial incentives provide consumers with more sustainable energy choices.

THE ENERGY TRANSITION LEAVES NO ONE BEHIND

  • The low-carbon energy transition creates at least 18 million new jobs by 2030. Long-term strategic planning addresses any adverse impacts the transition may have on vulnerable workers and communities.
  • Business proactively engages with workers and empowers them to benefit from emerging technologies and business models. Near-term employment and wage protections; medium-term upskilling, reskilling, and investment in alternative industries; and long-term education and innovation investment all help ensure worker prosperity.
  • In parallel, business, government, and multi-stakeholder initiatives continually step up collaborative efforts to eliminate human rights violations along the energy value chain.

ENERGY

ACTION AREAS FOR BUSINESS

2021-2030

01

Construct no new coal power plants. Plan and implement a phase-out of all unabated coal power generation by 2040 and reduce the share of coal in total global electricity generation to less than 10% by 2030.

02

Advocate for policies such as carbon pricing, that will lead to the effective removal of fossil fuel subsidies and will integrate environmental externalities into market prices to an extent that favors low and zero carbon solutions.

03

Send a strong demand signal by sourcing net-zero carbon energy for all operations while encouraging and supporting supply chains and customers to do the same.

04

Collaborate with peers, cities, and governments around the globe to align on common net-zero carbon ambitions, set science-based targets, and drive implementation accordingly.

05

Ramp up investment and accelerate innovation to drive down the cost of existing solutions, commercialize breakthrough technologies, and digitalize the energy system. In particular, invest in the development and deployment of energy storage technologies.

06

Transition to circular designs and business models to reduce energy demand and resource use across the value chain.

07

Electrify energy end-use wherever possible in buildings, mobility and industry, while also scaling up development and deployment of sustainable fuels for use in industry and long-distance transport.

08

Support information-sharing and education initiatives to increase consumer understanding and energy-aware behavior.

09

Invest in high quality nature-based solutions to remove emissions from the atmosphere while also enhancing biodiversity and ecosystem services. When fossil fuels cannot be displaced by low-carbon energy carriers, deploy carbon capture and storage technologies.

10

Mobilize coalitions with policymakers and other stakeholders to develop comprehensive strategies that ensure respect for human rights throughout the energy value chain and support a just and fair energy transition while phasing out fossil fuels.

Most Relevant SDGS

OTHER TRANSFORMATION PATHWAYS

Explore the other critical action areas that will drive a shift towards a sustainable future

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