Investing in renewable energy can support a global economic recovery that would be resilient to extraordinary circumstances and inclusive, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (Irena).
The Abu Dhabi-based think tank said in a new report advancing the renewables-based energy shift was an opportunity to meet international climate goals while boosting economic growth, creating millions of jobs and improving human welfare by 2050.
Irena’s Global Renewables Outlook report suggests that, in the next three decades, shifting the energy system toward decarbonization could boost cumulative global gross domestic product gains above a business-as-usual scenario by $98 trillion.
Also, moving away from fossil fuels would nearly quadruple renewable energy jobs to 42 million, expand employment in energy efficiency to 21 million and add 15 million in system flexibility.
“Governments are facing a difficult task of bringing the health emergency under control while introducing major stimulus and recovery measures,” Irena’s director general Francesco La Camera said. “The crisis has exposed deeply embedded vulnerabilities of the current system.”
La Camera said Irena’s outlook shows the ways to build more sustainable, equitable and resilient economies by aligning short-term recovery efforts with the medium- and long-term objectives of the Paris Agreement and the UN Sustainable Development Agenda.
“By accelerating renewables and making the energy transition an integral part of the wider recovery, governments can achieve multiple economic and social objectives in the pursuit of a resilient future that leaves nobody behind,” he said. —RONNEL W. DOMINGO
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