Rajendra Pachauri, Chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and a keynote speaker at the upcoming World Future Energy Summit in Abu Dhabi, has made a public call for governments across the world to stimulate research and development in innovation and technology - critical components for the dissemination of low-carbon energy technologies. The statement comes as heads of government from across the world are expected to declare their willingness to adopt ambitious emissions targets in the run up to the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has assessed scenarios by which the climate of the earth can be stabilized. Based on that assessment Pachauri says, "We need to invest now in the research & development of new technologies to guarantee that long-terms goals can be met."
Pachauri believes the first step to achieving sustainable energy consumption must be taken by governments. This should be achieved by managing demand, leading to reduced public energy consumption by stimulating lifestyle changes and attaining higher levels of energy efficiency.
Market failures along the innovation chain require public spending to drive down the cost of technologies to a point where the carbon price can take over and accelerate their deployment. Estimates from the European Commission suggest that global public support for energy R&D should at least double by 2012 and quadruple by 2020.
Pachauri highlights, "There is significant scope, at the individual and community levels, to avoid wasting energy through changes in behaviour and improving energy efficiency by implementing appropriate technological solutions. This must of course all be done alongside a shift towards use of renewable sources of energy."
Between now and 2020, decisive actions are required to scale-up the deployment of a range of technologies, with renewable energy a major focus. However, many technologies have been made available but are not yet commercially proven, according to Pachauri.
The issues Pachauri highlights are among the topics slated for discussion at the upcoming World Future Energy Summit that will take place in Abu Dhabi, 18-21 January 2010. Related topics include Energy Policy & Challenges, Sustainable Fuels & Power Technologies, Carbon Capture & Storage, Energy Efficiency & Sustainable Transportation. http://www.worldfutureenergysummit.com
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