Global investment in energy is slated to hit roughly $2.8 trillion in 2023, according to a new report from the International Energy Agency (IEA), with over $1.7 trillion of that set to go on clean energy technologies such as EVs, renewables and storage.
In a sign of how the energy transition is progressing, the IEA’s World Energy Investment report said solar investments were expected to attract over $1 billion a day in 2023.
In a statement, Fatih Birol, the IEA’s executive director, said investment in solar was “set to overtake the amount of investment going into oil production for the first time”.
While advocates of the transition to a sustainable future will welcome the above, they’ll likely be disheartened by the IEA’s projection that coal, gas and oil are still on course to attract “slightly over” $1 trillion of investment this year.
“Today’s fossil fuel investment spending is now more than double the levels needed in the Net Zero Emissions by 2050 Scenario,” the IEA’s report said.
“The misalignment for coal is particularly striking: today’s investments are nearly six times the 2030 requirements of the NZE Scenario,” it added.
The effect of fossil fuels on the environment is considerable. The U.N. says that, since the 19th century, “human activities have been the main driver of climate change, primarily due to burning fossil fuels like coal, oil and gas”.
The shadow of 2015′s Paris Agreement looms large over the IEA’s report. The landmark accord aims to “limit global warming to well below 2, preferably to 1.5 degrees Celsius, compared to pre-industrial levels”.
Cutting human-made carbon dioxide emissions to net-zero by 2050 is seen as crucial when it comes to meeting the 1.5 degrees Celsius target.
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