The International Energy Agency (IEA), International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), United Nations Statistics Division, World Bank, and WHO released a report titled “The 2023 edition of Tracking SDG 7: The Energy Progress Report.” In this article, you can read more about the report and what is says about achieving SDG 7. This topic is relevant for the IAS exam environment and ecology segment of GS paper III.
Tracking SDG 7: The Energy Progress Report Findings
- The report highlights that current efforts are insufficient to achieve Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7 on time, which aims to ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy by 2030.
- The report acknowledges some progress in specific areas, such as the increased use of renewables in the power sector. However, overall progress is insufficient to meet the targets set forth in the SDGs.
- The dominance of Solar Power and Renewable Investments: Solar technologies accounted for 53% of global investments in 2021, followed by wind with 41%. By 2025, renewables are expected to surpass coal as the primary source of electricity.
- Importance of Equitable Financial Flows: Multilateral financial institutions need to direct financial flows more equitably worldwide to support renewable deployment and infrastructure development.
- Energy Intensity Improvement: Energy intensity, the measure of energy used per dollar of GDP, improved by 1.8% annually from 2010-2020, higher than the previous decades. However, the rate of improvement has slowed in recent years, dropping to 0.6% in 2020, the worst since the global financial crisis. Annual improvements through 2030 need to average 3.4% to meet the SDG target of 7.3.
Challenges and Concerns:
- Insufficient Funding: International public financial flows for clean energy in low- and middle-income countries have been decreasing, limiting investment opportunities.
- Mounting Debt and Rising Energy Prices: These factors worsen the outlook for achieving universal access to clean cooking and electricity.
- Access to Clean Cooking and Electricity: Without further action, projections estimate that 1.9 billion people will lack clean cooking facilities, and 660 million people will be without electricity access in 2030.
- Renewable Share in Heating and Transport: Efforts to increase renewables’ share in heating and transport, which represent over three-quarters of global energy consumption, are off-target to achieve the 1.5-degree Celsius climate objectives.
Energy Progress Report – India’s Specific Findings
- India was the top recipient of international public financial flows, receiving $2.9 billion in 2020-21, with 66% allocated to solar energy.
- India has the largest share of the clean cooking access deficit, with 505 million people lacking access, followed by China with 296 million.
- India has made progress with 15 million people connected to off-grid solar products.
- The world is not on track to achieve SDG 7 for energy by 2030, despite some progress in specific areas.
- Structural reforms in international public finance and increased investment are necessary to meet the targets and ensure universal access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy.
Tracking SDG7: The Energy Progress Report 2023:- Download PDF Here
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