IEA Releases Updated Report on Gaps in Clean Energy Development

21 July 2010: The International Energy Agency (IEA) has released a report aimed at decision makers titled “Global Gaps in Clean Energy RD&D: Update and Recommendations for International Collaboration.”

The report updates a December 2009 IEA paper that found that clean energy research, development and demonstration (RD&D) public funding must be increased 3-6 times current levels in order to achieve a 50% reduction in energy-related carbon dioxide emissions by 2050. The update discusses the impacts of green stimulus commitments of the past two years but questions whether their one-off nature can sustain longer-term growth. The Global Gaps report continues by highlighting the need to catalyze private sector involvement as a financial and technical innovation partner to achieve global climate goals, and what must be done to that end. The report highlights existing successes in this area, such as: fiscal incentives; biofuels blending mandates; grants for demonstration initiatives; feed-in tariffs; and quota- based schemes.

The new Global Gaps report also re-analyzes the funding gaps looked at in the previous report, estimating the remaining gap to be between US$30-90 billion, half of which is expected to come from public funding. In the new analysis, the IEA formulates recommendations for advancing international action in the following nine areas: advanced vehicles; bioenergy; carbon capture and storage (CCS); high-efficiency coal technologies; energy efficiency in buildings and industry; nuclear energy; solar energy; smart grids; and other renewables, including wind. [The Updated Report] [Original 2009 Report]