Jun 18, 2020 - Energy & Environment

A $3 trillion roadmap to a green pandemic recovery

Animated gif of an earth lightbulb turning off
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Governments can create millions of jobs and put carbon emissions into a "structural decline" with a three-year, $3 trillion push to stitch climate-friendly energy into pandemic response packages, the International Energy Agency said Thursday.

Why it matters: The analysis, crafted with the International Monetary Fund, is an effort put analytical weight behind the push for "green" economic recovery measures.

The big picture: The report looks at potential job creation across an array of energy sectors, floating policy ideas around power, transportation, industry,  buildings, fuels and  "emerging low‐carbon technologies."

  • Overall, they see the "sustainable recovery plan" creating or saving 9 million jobs annually worldwide over three years, while adding over 1% annually to global economic growth.
  • Most of the $3 trillion would come from private finance "mobilized" by government policies, according to IEA head Fatih Birol, who is tweeting about the findings.
  • If enacted, the plan would mean that 2019 was the "definitive peak" in global emissions, IEA said.

Where it stands: IEA points out that globally, energy has not yet been a prominent part of the trillions of dollars of economic response packages worldwide, which have been more focused on emergency stabilization.

  • But it's part of some plans, including some European nations looking to boost electric vehicle sales and make aviation cleaner, and low-carbon energy provisions in recently proposed EU-wide recovery plan.
  • The site Carbon Brief is doing yeoman's work compiling a detailed compendium of energy and climate provisions in pandemic response packages.

What's next: IEA is trying to organize a global coalition behind the idea and convening a July 9 meeting of government officials from dozens of nations, CEOs, investors and others.

Go deeper: IEA outlines three-year plan for sustainable recovery (S&P Global Platts)

Go deeper