UNIDO Publishes Reports on Mitigation Costs

24 January 2011: The UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) has published three reports focusing on ways of significantly reducing industrial carbon dioxide emissions in developed and developing countries at a reasonable cost.

The three reports, titled “Global Industrial Energy Efficiency Benchmarking - An Energy Policy Tool,” “Renewable Energy in Industrial Applications - An assessment of the 2050 potential” and “Carbon Capture and Storage in Industrial Applications: Technology Synthesis Report,” outline a path for the post-Cancun energy and climate agenda and underline that energy efficiency, renewable energy and carbon dioxide capture and storage (CCS) need to be combined.

The energy efficiency benchmarking report provides an overview of the global energy efficiency potential based on proven benchmarking and indicator methodologies. It concludes that current energy saving potential in the manufacturing industry and petroleum refineries is estimated to be 31 Exajoules, equivalent to an energy efficiency improvement potential of approximately 26% of the industry's current total final industrial energy demand worldwide. According to the renewable energy in industrial applications report, by 2050, up to 21% of all manufacturing energy can be of renewable origin. It concludes that an increase in renewable energy in industry has the potential to contribute about 10% of all expected greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reductions in 2050. The CCS report describes the main technology options available to the industry sectors that have the highest potential for carbon mitigation. It provides summary descriptions, highlights case studies and provides cost estimates for research, demonstration and commercial projects being planned or developed.

According to the papers, once the energy efficiency and renewable energy potentials in industry are exhausted, CCS must come into play. The reports also point out that carbon dioxide reduction is affordable, emphasizing that many of the measures could reduce cost and enhance competitiveness and productivity. Together with the Global Environmental Facility (GEF), UNIDO has started a programme to implement many of the identified measures. [Industrial Energy Efficiency Benchmarking Report] [Renewable Energy in Industrial Applications Report] [Carbon Capture and Storage Report] [UNIDO Press Release]