“The TEMPting world of renewable energy supply”

ECO, civil society’s daily report on the UN climate negotiations, ran an article on Workstream 2 today. WS2 is a priority for AOSIS as it deals with pre-2020 ambition that is needed to keep global warming of 2 degrees or less within reach:

(June 3, 2015)

ECO ♥s Workstream 2 and has been looking forward to the next TEM since the last one when Parties united behind the slogan “more, faster, now!”

Today, it’s finally time to gather some of our brightest minds to talk about renewable energy supply: how to unlock potential and leverage scalable, replicable and transformative support efforts.

It’s important that the TEMs are part of every negotiation session and continue beyond 2015. There are many issues and nuances with the areas of high mitigation potential that have not been covered yet. Here’s some of the most interesting things we have learned so far:

– Many countries (from Germany to India, the UAE and Morocco) were too careful when they decided on their renewable energy targets and have subsequently been surprised by their success  in achieving and exceeding them.

– Many countries which do not have targets specifically for renewable energy have excellent secondary legislation, which has resulted in a recent boom in renewables. Examples include wind power in Brazil and solar in Japan.

– Many countries have developed frameworks for renewable energy, mostly for reasons other than climate change. This proves that renewables are more attractive than fossil fuels for a range of reasons. It’s all about co-benefits: job creation, reduced freshwater demand, waste management, technological advancement, avoidance of fluctuating fossil fuel import costs, health benefits, and cleaning up polluted air, soil and water, to mention just a few.

It’s encouraging to be able to talk about real solutions in the TEMs, and there’s more to look forward to the meeting on energy efficiency in urban environments on Friday. However, this talkneeds be turned into action. More action, faster action,now. Knowledge from the technical examination process should inform the comprehensive and actionable decisions on enhanced pre-2020 mitigation ambition in Paris.