G20 urged to ‘get serious about renewables’

CEOs from leading wind energy companies call for major countries to raise ambitions on clean power [Image: GWEC]


Leading chief executives from companies in the global wind industry, including Orsted, Vestas and Siemens Gamesa, have called on G20 members to show leadership in the climate crisis by raising national ambitions and urgently laying out concrete plans for increased wind energy production to replace fossil fuels.

The 23 CEOs, representing the Global Wind Energy Coalition for COP26, have sent an open letter to leaders of the G20 acknowledging that while some progress has been made in the energy transition, current net zero pledges still put the world on a 2.4C global warming pathway, well beyond what is needed to avoid the worst impacts of climate change.

Meanwhile, wind energy and renewables installations are currently falling well short of the trajectory needed to meet international climate goals, requiring urgent action to improve energy policies, they said.
Other signatories include the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC), SSE, RWE, Mainstream Renewable Power, and associations representing the industry in geographies such as the UK, Brazil, China, Mexico, and South Africa.

They call for effective policy and regulatory frameworks for procurement and delivery of renewable energy, committments to planification of clean energy infrastructure including grids and transmission, and for agreements to deliver effective and credible carbon pricing mechanisms.

They also called for the alignment of national and regional finance flows with benchmarks for a net 1.5°C-compliant pathway and the development of cohesive and inclusive policies which dedicate public resource to the shift to a net zero economy.

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GWEC chief executive Ben Backwell said: “G20 member countries represent more than 80% of global energy-related carbon emissions – so the leaders of these countries hold the power and public duty to transform the world’s energy system.

“These countries need to get serious about renewables, and in particular wind energy as the clean energy solution with the most potential to help the world meet its Paris Agreement targets.”

The signatories also highlight that the recent roadmap from the International Energy Agency (IEA) shows that annual wind deployment must quadruple from 93GW in 2020 to 390GW in 2030 to meet a net zero by 2050 scenario.

If current growth rates for wind energy persist, the letter argues that global wind capacity will fall dramatically short of the volumes required for carbon neutrality by 2050, with installation shortfalls of as much as 57% by 2050.

GWEC director of COP26 Rebecca Williams said: “G20 countries have huge amounts of untapped wind power potential which can fulfil significant portions of national electricity demand, but they are barely scratching the surface of what they can deploy.

“With the current pace of wind power installations across the world, forecasts show that we will only install less than half of the wind power capacity needed to get to net zero by 2050.”

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