Policy failing the energy transition, unlike technology innovation – report


DNV GL has issued its third edition of the Energy Transition Outlook which analyses the factors driving and hindering the transition to low-carbon energy and business models.

According to the report:

  • 50% of all energy needs will be met by renewables by 2050
  • Plunging technology costs and market forces are driving the transition, but without bold policy intervention we will fall well short of the Paris climate goals
  • Oil will peak in the mid-2020s, whilst capital expenditure on grids and renewables will exceed fossil CAPEX by 2025 and natural gas will overtake oil as the single largest energy source in 2026
  • In 2030 the amount of energy produced will start to decline even in a world of growing GDP
  • 40% of the energy demand will be met by electricity (up from 19% in 2017) by mid-century
  • 63% of the electricity will be sourced from solar and wind by mid-century
  • Road transportation will use less energy in 2050 than it does today
  • The technology to meet Paris Climate change goals exists but the policies do not

Remi Eriksen, CEO of DNV GL, said: “Existing technology can deliver the future we desire – including meeting the 1.5°C target set out in the Paris Agreement. So far, support for the energy transition has been too sporadic. For example, German, Japanese and Chinese support for the solar industry has been vital in transforming its energy mix and Norway’s and China’s uptake of EVs has been rapid because of government support. We need widespread policy supporting emerging technologies, and continuing the support in the build-up phase to accelerate the energy transition.”

The report is available for download here

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Nicholas Nhede is an experienced energy sector writer based in Clarion Event's Cape Town office. He has been writing for Smart Energy International’s print and online media platforms since 2015, on topics including metering, smart grids, renewable energy, the Internet of Things, distributed energy resources and smart cities. Originally from Zimbabwe, Nicholas holds a diploma in Journalism and Communication Studies. Nicholas has a passion for how technology can be used to accelerate the energy transition and combat climate change.