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Energy Focus Day Bulletin

Volume 181 Number 14 | Wednesday, 9 December 2015


REPORT OF THE LIMA-PARIS ACTION AGENDA (LPAA) FOCUS DAY ON ENERGY

7 December 2015 | Paris, France


Languages: EN (HTML/PDF)
Visit our IISD/ENB+ Meeting Coverage from Paris, France at: http://enb.iisd.org/climate/cop21/lpaa-energy/

The Lima-Paris Action Agenda (LPAA) Focus Day on Energy was held on Monday, 7 December 2015 in Paris, France, during the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC COP 21). Convened by Sustainable Energy For All (SE4All) and the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the Energy Focus Day highlighted the role of renewable energy and energy efficiency in fighting climate change.

The LPAA is a joint undertaking of the Peruvian and French COP presidencies, the Office of the UN Secretary-General and the UNFCCC Secretariat. The LPAA was announced in December 2014, with the objective of strengthening climate action throughout 2015, at COP 21 and beyond. It seeks to demonstrate that the transition to low-emission and climate-resilient development is both urgent and feasible, with state and non-state actors creating and implementing initiatives and generating momentum for climate action in different action areas. The Energy Focus Day is one of the thematic focus events organized under the LPAA to provide an opportunity for stakeholders to present issues in their action area and showcase solution pathways to tackle.

During the session, high-level participants from government, the private sector, civil society and the UN system spoke on, inter alia, the potential solution to 50% of the greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reductions required for a 2°C pathway; the role of policy, long-term vision and action plans; and private sector commitments to energy-use reduction.

This report summarizes the opening and closing sessions of the LPAA Energy Focus Day, as well as the Energy Efficiency Global Movement session.

REPORT OF ENERGY FOCUS DAY

OPENING

Energy Focus Day opened on Monday, 7 December 2015. Observing that two-thirds of GHG emissions come from the production and consumption of energy, Ségolène Royal, Minister of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy, France, reiterated the central nature of energy issues in addressing climate change. She underscored that achievement of a 1.5ºC or 2ºC pathway will require a global energy transition.

Royal highlighted three key high-level commitments launched during the first week of COP 21: the global solar energy alliance; commitments to double investment in renewable energy; and the Carbon Pricing Leadership Coalition. She underscored the importance of means of implementation and accelerating technology transfer to enable developing countries to achieve clean and sustainable development.

Rachel Kyte, Vice-President and Special Envoy for Climate Change, World Bank Group, and Designate Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General and CEO of SE4All, said the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) provided “tail winds” for work on enabling energy access for all and addressing climate change, stressing that “we cannot get below 2ºC or leave no-one behind” without driving momentum for the global energy transition.

Kyte noted the rapid development of renewable energy markets in parts of the world, mentioning that business models now exist to extend the reach of renewable energy and to finance electricity at scale. She observed the central role energy transition plays in the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) submitted by countries under the UNFCCC.

Adnan Amin, Director General, IRENA, pointed to the “extraordinary” momentum underway, noting the prominence of renewable energy in COP 21 and the LPAA as recognition that it forms a major part of the solution. He presented key findings from IRENA’s ‘REthinking Energy’ report, including the increase in the share of global energy needs met by renewable from 18% in 2010 to 23% in 2015, and the potential for this to double by 2030, resulting in GHG reductions of 8.6 gigatonnes. Amin underscored the “critical role of SE4All,” highlighting that this is half the reduction needed to stay below the 2ºC pathway, with energy efficiency (EE) measures capable of enabling the other half, while increasing access to energy.

Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson, President, Iceland, expressed his satisfaction at the creation of the Global Geothermal Alliance, stating that it signifies a fundamental shift towards using the heat resources available below all countries. Describing Iceland’s journey in transforming its energy sector from 80% reliance on imported oil and coal to a 100% renewable energy economy, he said the key lesson to be learned is that a transformation to renewable energy is not only about energy, but about creating diversified, modern, dynamic economies. He underlined that it is possible for all countries to undergo this shift.

Grímsson detailed Iceland’s contribution to training and developing geothermal capabilities in different countries, underscoring that energy production can be increased as demand grows, and scaled to meet the needs of all citizens.

THE ENERGY EFFICIENCY GLOBAL MOVEMENT

This session on energy efficiency was introduced by Rachel Kyte, who stated that energy efficiency is an extraordinary opportunity for: collaboration within and among cities, countries and regions; closing the energy access gap; and staying within 2ºC pathway while not leaving anyone behind.

Ajay Mathur, Director General, Bureau of Energy Efficiency, India, said “squeezing out every ounce of energy efficiency is incredibly important,” and emphasized that energy efficiency is more than just “turning the thermostat down one degree.”

Brian Motherway, Head of Energy Efficiency, IEA, said he sees energy efficiency at a tipping point, citing analysis that shows it is possible – particularly in emerging economies – to simultaneously increase access to affordable energy, improve energy efficiency and achieve emission reduction goals.

SESSION I: FINANCE SECTOR READY TO SCALE UP INVESTMENT

This panel was moderated by Jonathan Charles, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). Josué Tanaka, Managing Director, EBRD, noted the need to collaborate with, and connect, small investors, explaining that EBRD now comprises 106 banks covering 42 countries. Ebru Dildar Edin, Garanti Bank, Turkey, called for increasing the knowledge of local banks, as well as facilitating access to international financial institutions.

Sylvie Lemmet, G20-IPEEC Task Group on Energy Efficiency and Finance, France, outlined their work in raising awareness of energy efficiency issues among international financial institutions so as to promote the mainstreaming of energy efficiency into all international investment decisions. Naoko Ishii, CEO, Global Environment Facility (GEF), stressed the importance of scaling up investment, and urged for strengthening platforms among three key stakeholders: cities, businesses and finance institutions.

Laura Tuck, World Bank, highlighted the importance of: energy efficiency for poverty reduction; enforcement of energy efficiency-related regulations; and small-scale energy efficiency investments in low-income communities. Geeta Aiyer, President, Boston Common Asset Management, underscored the need for investors to redirect corporate capital to support long-term infrastructure for sustainability.

SESSION II: FOCUS ON TWO INITIATIVES – BUILDING AND DISTRICT EFFICIENCY

This session, moderated by Achim Steiner, Executive Director, UN Environment Programme, focused on two initiatives in buildings and district energy. Jennifer Layke, World Resources Institute (WRI), announced WRI’s work with 25 new major partners to accelerate global energy efficiency efforts.

Jean-Pascal Tricoire, CEO, Schneider Electric, observed that the building sector comprises particularly complex value chains, often with many decision-makers involved. Despite this challenge, he said, addressing energy efficiency in buildings involves many “low hanging fruits.”

Niels Christiansen, CEO, Danfoss, and Matthew Pencharz, Deputy Mayor for Environment and Energy, London, presented case studies on district energy systems. Christiansen said district energy should be considered “the future back bone of smart cities” and noted that 98% of all energy in Copenhangen is from district energy, thereby allowing the city to completely de-couple heating energy from carbon emissions.

Pencharz underscored policy makers’ responsibility to establish appropriate market rules to enable the private sector to deliver district energy solutions at scale, while noting the cultural barrier of people being used to controlling their own household energy.

SESSION III: THE ROLE OF POLICY, LONG TERM VISION AND ACTION PLANS

This panel was moderated by Jonathan Charles, and considered various jurisdictions’ commitments to enable energy efficiency improvements. Hugo Martinez, Minister of Foreign Affairs, El Salvador, spoke on the work of the Central American Integration System (SICA) to guarantee access to sustainable, modern energy for all, highlighting work with eight jurisdictions to establish a legal framework and to promote the development of energy efficiency across the region.

Datuk Ismail Ibrahim, Executive Director, Iskandar, Malaysia Iskandar, discussed the development and implementation of low-carbon development blueprints, underscoring the need for: developing a plan of action to facilitate implementation; involving stakeholders at all levels, right from the design stage; and collaborating with partners.

Isabella Lövin, Minister of Development, Sweden, described measures to reduce national energy consumption by 20% by 2020, involving leadership by energy advisors in each municipality. Kelly Speakes-Backman, Senior Vice-President, Alliance to Save Energy, underscored the role of national political leadership, pointing to measures implemented by the Obama Administration in the US, such as a US$25 billion stimulus package for energy efficiency and the goal of doubling energy productivity by 2030.

SESSION IV: FOCUS ON TWO INITIATIVES – FUEL EFFICIENCY AND APPLIANCES

This session was moderated by Monika Froehler, Energy Efficiency Programme and Communication Officer, SE4All, and began with a video on the use of copper, described as the most effective non-precious conductor of heat and electricity, and its contribution to sustainable development and energy efficiency.

Anthony Lea, CEO, International Copper Association, discussed the positive benefits that can be achieved through the United for Efficiency (U4E) initiative in ensuring developing countries can “leapfrog” the development curve to implement efficiency standards.

Ragip Balcɪoğlu, Vice-President Arçelik, pointed to the private sector’s “great responsibility.” He stressed that energy efficiency would provide the biggest contribution to reducing the carbon footprint of products, reporting a predicted 50% increase in energy demand by 2030.

Participants watched another video on vehicle fuel efficiency by the FIA Foundation’s Global Fuel Initiative (GFI), which explained the Initiative’s aim to reduce the carbon footprint of transport vehicles through cleaner fuels. Sheila Watson, FIA Foundation, discussed the contribution of energy efficiency to the GFI, describing it as a place where expertise is gathered and shared, and mentioned work being undertaken under the Global Energy Efficiency Accelerator Platform.

Marcelo Mena, Vice Secretary of Environment, Chile, outlined national fuel efficiency standards in Chile, describing an integrated tax on light duty vehicles based on their fuel efficiency and NOx emissions.

SESSION V: PRIVATE SECTOR COMMITMENTS TO ENERGY USE REDUCTION

This session, moderated by Jonathan Charles, featured perspectives from the private sector on approaches to improve energy efficiency. Underscoring the success of the “we commit” campaign launched at the Second SE4All Forum in New York in May 2015, Jean-Marc Ollagnier, CEO, Accenture Resources, highlighted commitments from 775 companies to save energy between 2016-2020, including companies from 33 different countries, across all sectors.

Luis Neves, Chairman, Global e-Sustainability Initiative (GeSI), expressed strong support for a new climate agreement from the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) industry, reporting that action in the industry could reduce global carbon emissions by 20% by 2030, while generating US$11 trillion in revenues and cost savings.

Ulrich Spiesshofer, CEO, ASEA Brown Boveri, highlighted his company’s commitment to reduce energy efficiency by 20% by 2020 in all operations, and underscored several investment initiatives amounting to US$100s of millions each year in environmentally-friendly and low-loss power grid technology, including solar and wind, as well as micro-grid projects, to bring electricity to 1 billion people in Africa.

Nigel Topping, CEO, We Mean Business, and Executive Director, Carbon Disclosure Project, said constructive collaboration between businesses and governments would catalyze action on climate change and promote smart policy frameworks, noting that businesses had a clear list of requirements from policymakers, including: clear messages about long-term action and end-points, such as a net-zero carbon emissions target.

SESSION VI: FOCUS ON A MAJOR INITIATIVE ON ENERGY EFFICIENCY

This session, moderated by Jonathan Charles, reviewed initiatives in two major lighting coalitions: En.lighten and the Clean Energy Ministerial’s (CEM) Global Lighting Challenge (GLC). Eric Rondolat, CEO, Philips Lighting, said the En.lighten initiative aims to end light poverty by 2030 for the 1.1 billion that currently have no access. He underscored his company’s 50% carbon footprint reduction since 2010 and its aim to be carbon neutral by 2020.

Neelima Jain, Energy Efficiency Services Limited, presented the Indian Government’s plan to distribute 770 million LED light bulbs and retrofit 35 million streetlights with LED by 2019, resulting in savings of 85 million tonnes of carbon dioxide, and contributing to reduced bills for households. Ibrahim Aylan, Minister for Energy, Sweden, said the CEM was showing that a relatively small group of countries could have a positive influence on the energy trajectory for the rest of the world. He highlighted Sweden’s endorsement of the GLC, and mentioned that Swedish company IKEA has announced a goal to sell 500 million LED light bulbs by 2020.

KEEPING THE MOMENTUM – 2016-2020

In the closing session, introduced by Rachel Kyte, Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary-General, emphasized the adoption of SDG 7 as the first universal call for affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all, and an opportunity to transform economies, phase out fossil fuels and increase renewable energy while addressing poverty reduction.

Ségolène Royal, Minister of Environment, Energy and Sustainable Development, France, said as each country transposes the Paris agreement into its national legislation, there is the need to consider what concrete tools can be given to companies, cities, rural areas and citizens to make the agreement a reality. She underscored the enthusiasm and consensus around energy issues, noting “we are no longer slowing down progress: everyone is rushing to join in,” and that decision makers “need to live up to the expectations of our citizens.”

Ernest Moniz, Secretary of Energy, US, focused on technology and innovation as a major part of global success going forward, noting the dramatically reduced cost of renewable technologies and a number of public and private initiatives that will help keep the momentum going until 2030, 2040 and beyond.

Mogens Lykketoft, President of the UN General Assembly, underlined that anthropogenic energy-related emissions and sustainable development have started to decouple, laying the foundation for accelerated action to phase out fossil fuels and enhance energy efficiency. He emphasized that a shift to clean energy will have huge positive impacts for realising the SDGs.

Kyte said the combination of the clear business case for sustainable energy, alongside government support and predictable, regulatory long-term signals, would enable SE4All to realize its potential.

Adnan Amin stressed that clean sustainable energy is at the heart of the climate change agenda, highlighting the “new energy paradigm,” in which renewable is now cost-competitive in 26 markets. He said IRENA was proud to be a member of the SE4All initiative, underscored the great leadership that had been shown in the past year, and looked forward to the future direction in which “ambition becomes reality.”