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Press2008, News

IPCC plenary gives go-ahead for Special Report on Renewable Energy


Budapest, 11 April 2008. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change formally decided today to produce a Special Report on Renewable Energy Sources and Climate Change Mitigation, for completion in 2010.

“The Special Report will be the reference document for governments and policymakers around the world on renewables,” said Steve Sawyer, GWEC’s Secretary General. “The 4th Assessment Report outlined very clearly the threat posed by the accelerating rate of climate change, and highlighted the fact that we have the means to solve the problem. In the critical next decade, renewables are the key option for reducing fossil fuel emissions, along with energy efficiency. The IPCC recognized that the rapidly growing renewable energy sector deserves special attention given the extraordinary growth experienced by wind power and other technologies, even since the cutoff date for material for the 4th assessment report which was late in 2006”, concluded Sawyer.

The IPCC’s 4th Assessment Report highlighted very clearly that if we are to avoid the worst ravages of man-made climate change, then global greenhouse gas emissions must peak and then begin to decline before 2020. Discussion on longer term targets will continue as the science evolves and our knowledge improves, but the critical task in the next decade is clear.

 “The Global Wind Energy Council will certainly play a role in the production of this report, and we hope that the other sectors, too, will contribute their real-world knowledge and experience”, said Arthouros Zervos, GWEC Chairman, who participated in  the preparation of the scoping document which was adopted by the panel in Budapest today. “We fully expect that the Special Report will highlight in an authoritative fashion the key role for renewable energy in combating climate change; particularly because of their ability to deployed rapidly and on a large scale in every country of the world at reasonable cost while addressing both sustainable development and energy security concerns.”

As a result of a scoping meeting held in Germany earlier this year, a proposal was developed which will address the subject in five main sections: Renewable Energy and Climate Change; the individual technologies and their integration into the overall energy system; renewable energy and sustainable development; climate change mitigation potentials and costs; and policy, financing and implementation. Following the formal adoption today by the IPCC, the next step will be for governments to nominate experts to compile the vast quantity of literature on the subject, to write the chapters and to review the comments received from expert and government commentators on the three or four drafts of the individual reports. Eventually, the summary for policymakers will be presented to the full IPCC for adoption, which is currently planned to be in 2010.

The outline of the Special Report is available on the IPCC website at: http://www.ipcc.ch/meetings/session28/doc3.pdf