Investments in global energy supplies will jump this year, led by an expansion in clean energy, but the spending will still prove insufficient to meet global climate targets or tackle soaring energy prices, the International Energy Agency warned.
The worst global energy crisis in decades, brought on in part by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, has left energy investments caught between longstanding efforts to transition to green energy and more immediate demands to rapidly ramp up supply to contain soaring prices.
The latest figures, published by the Paris-based agency in an annual report Wednesday, suggest energy investments were struggling in both regards.
“As things stand, today’s energy investment trends show a world falling short on climate goals, and on reliable and affordable energy,” the report said.
Total energy investments are forecast to rise by 8% this year to $2.4 trillion, above pre-Covid-19 levels. A jump in spending on clean and renewable energy sources comprises the largest chunk of the rise, a promising sign for global efforts to reduce carbon emissions following years of lackluster growth, the IEA said.
Clean energy investments grew by an average of 2% a year in the five years after the landmark 2015 Paris Climate Agreement. Since 2020, they have expanded by 12%, a significant increase but still far short of the levels required to meet climate targets, the IEA said.
Spending on clean energy will exceed $1.4 trillion in 2022, far behind the roughly $2.8 trillion that would be required to meet current climate pledges by 2030 and further still behind the more than $4 trillion that will be needed to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.
and gas prices
have soared since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Russia, one of the world’s biggest exporters of oil, has seen much of its supplies shunned by Western nations. Sanctions have stranded millions of barrels of oil in the country and forced its oil companies to shut off wells. Meanwhile, geopolitical tensions have seen Russian gas supplies to Europe curtailed.
While the crisis has accelerated spending on clean energy, it has also revived investments in fossil fuels, prompted by concerns about energy security. Oil and gas investments rose 10% in 2021 but remain below pre-Covid levels, the IEA said. Investments in coal supply rose 10% in 2021 and are expected to rise by a similar amount this year, despite global pledges to move away from the fuel.
Despite those efforts, and the growing investment in clean energy, there was little sign that the extra energy supplies would be enough to bring about an end to high energy bills and threatened to push millions …….