Dec 4, 2020 - Energy & Environment

Global energy efficiency gains are stalling

Data: IEA; Chart: Axios Visuals
Data: IEA; Chart: Axios Visuals

Improvements in energy efficiency on a global basis have slowed to their lowest level in a decade, the International Energy Agency said in a new analysis.

Why it matters: The slowdown is another headwind in the fight against climate change, the agency warned.

And the same analysis finds that the pandemic is cutting investments in more efficient buildings, vehicles and equipment.

Where it stands: The chart above shows trends in energy intensity, or energy consumed per unit of activity.

Threat level: IEA called the slowdown "especially worrying" because efficiency gains provide 40% of the emissions cuts over the next 20 years in their "sustainable development" case.

That's a long-term model of an energy system consistent with the aims of the Paris climate deal.

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