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IEA Releases World Energy Outlook 2009

weocover10 November 2009: The International Energy Agency (IEA) has released its annual flagship publication, the World Energy Outlook 2009 (WEO-2009), months ahead of schedule this year to make it available to policy makers and negotiators in the run up to the 15th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP-15) to the UNFCCC, scheduled to be held in December in Copenhagen, Denmark.

The 696-page document paints a broad picture of the global energy situation in 2009, evaluates the mixed blessing that global economic decline has provided for global energy hopes and needs, and focuses almost solely on the climate challenge as it relates to global energy trends. It warns that although 2009 saw a reprieve in the expansion of carbon emissions, current trends in energy use nonetheless indicate a rise in temperature of up to 6°C if aggressive mitigation step are not taken. The WEO-2009 calls for a low-carbon energy revolution to avoid such catastrophic climate change, highlighting that the low hanging fruit of improving energy efficiency offers the most promise for cutting emissions. The report emphasizes that unprecedented investments and new financing mechanisms will be required to achieve these aims. It also emphasizes that no matter what policy landscape takes shape, certain fossil fuels, especially natural gas, will continue to play significant roles, but that a glut in this sector may be on the horizon due to its massive expansion of late. It also indicates that the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) will play an increasingly important role in the fight against climate change. [IEA Press Release] [World Energy Outlook][Executive Summary]