The 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26)
The Real Deal and Not a Drill
Human activities over the century have always had effects on its environment, whether negatively or positively. Now that the world has advanced in technology, it has many devastating effects on climate change and, in turn, has many negative effects on the environment. In a bid to find a solution, International Energy Agency’s World Energy Outlook 2021 has worked hard to find a way that benefits the earth and its inhabitants. This new solution is also pocket-friendly cost.
The issue, however, has never been a poor solution as much as poor implementation. The right efforts have not been put in place, and as a result that, emissions have not subsided. However, experts are wondering if we should be hopeful for the COP26 at Glasgow. For WEO 2021, we need to focus on the next step.
The Four Scenarios of Focus
Accordingly, there are four scenarios in place that can facilitate the next step or action.
- Step one has to do with the main policies of the government, which is known as “stated policies”
- Step two APS focuses on ensuring that the pledges made would be put into practice in full and promptly. This is called the “announced pledges.”
- Step three focuses on SDC, the UN’s sustainable development target, to preserve the environment. This is referred to as “sustainable development”.
- Step four ensures that NZE is following what it claims to be and focuses on “net zero emissions by 2050”.
Uses and effects of these Four Steps
The work of these four steps is to make sure emissions are stabilised. For APS, it has taken the responsibility to make sure emission is reduced to20 gigatons of CO2 yearly by 2050. NZE is set to deliver net-zero emissions in the year 2050. Which in turn will affect the median temperature increase beyond pre-industrial levels by 1.5°C. With this, there would be a need to cut global emissions by at least 40% by 2030.
To get this done, it takes self-will regardless of the novel predicament tackling the plan. Revolutionising the energy system is a task that must be done based on the IEA, and this is because the task is affordable and technically possible to achieve. The major role this is going to play is focusing on electricity that is generated by renewables. Although electrification is the major thing, however, other energy sources would be established, especially hydrogen and bioenergy. These would cater to the needs of industries and transportation.
To Get This Done, What Should Be Done?
For anything to work, there needs to be a broad improvement in energy efficiency. This would help to reduce leaks of methane. However, the greater burden for change will fall on developing countries. This fight for a cleaner environment could be won or lost depending on how countries still developing and with a large population can adopt this new solution.
The innovation in electricity will need digital technologies to meet the needs of the teeming population living without electricity. For that to happen, cyber security, industrial processes, advanced innovations on batteries, hydrogen electrolysers, and biofuels all need to be made available. And for availability to take place, huge research, investments, and developments from both private and public sectors will need to be made.
What Are The Possible Setbacks?
Lack of financial support from emerging countries is one of the major challenges and could be combated by multilateral banks wading in for support. It could also be made feasible by catalysing private investment. Besides that, required know-how should be provided for emerging countries because most are still behind in technological developments. It might be very hard to carry them along without proper incentives and government intervention.