Narrowing the emissions gap

Paris, 7. desember 2015

Utenriksminister Børge Brendes tale ved lansering av rapporten “Narrowing the Emissions Gap”, COP21 i Paris, 7. desember 2015.

Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen.

Action in the energy sector is crucial in order to curb global greenhouse gas emissions.

Energy production and use account for around two thirds of global emissions. De-coupling economic growth from growth in emissions is essential if we are to meet the two-degree target.

Many developing countries are making important contributions towards narrowing the emission gap through renewable energy and energy efficiency programmes.

But it remains a paradox that the emission reductions from most of these efforts are neither measured nor reported.

This means that we do not know the impacts of the actions we are taking to cut emissions by investing in renewable energy and energy efficiency.

The 1 Gigaton Coalition was established to address this paradox. It is of great importance for several reasons:

  • to quantify the emissions savings resulting from renewable and energy efficiency activities in developing countries
  • to encourage more countries to support activities to achieve even more reductions
  • and to promote the development of a standardised and common measurement, reporting and verification system (MRV) for emission reductions.

The logic is simple. If we are to claim success, we need to measure what we are achieving.  

Agreeing on a common verification system could be one of the major achievements of COP21.

I am pleased that today we are launching the Coalition’s first report.

It underscores the huge potential of renewable energy and energy efficiency activities in achieving emissions savings.

The report estimates that current energy programmes in developing countries could save the atmosphere from 1.7 gigatonnes of CO2 emissions per year by 2020.

According to UNEP, this is almost 20 % of the global emissions gap needed to meet the two-degree target.

This should inspire us all to establish new partnerships and to scale up investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency.

The Coalition is growing – and its success depends on the active engagement of its partners and effective coordination with other initiatives and programmes.

I would like to thank UNEP for coordinating this initiative.

Our goal is that the Coalition continues to grow.

That it helps to document the substantial emissions savings from renewable energy and energy efficiency programmes.

That it promotes the development of a common measurement, reporting and verification system for emissions reductions.

That it provides incentives for new investments and new energy partnerships so that we can close the emissions gap.

In short, that the Coalition becomes a driving force for energy action towards a sustainable and low-carbon future.

Thank you.