If certain powerful individuals in the Trump administration are to have their way, the US could be doing away with a trillion-dollar opportunity. According to two global energy agency reports, $19 trillion is set to get injected into the economy facilitated by the Paris Climate Agreement within the next three decades as countries strive to invest in energy efficiency, renewable energy, and zero-emission transportations. To meet the Paris treaty requirements, the investments will come in handy as the agreement is targeted towards limiting global warming to curb consequences that arise from global warming such as extreme weather events, sea level rises.
The US might pull out of the agreement as Trump is considering this option. The German government-commissioned reports indicate that the United States could miss out on many of the benefits that come with the global agreement if it was to pull out. On Monday, International Renewable Energy Science in a new study together with the International Energy Agency said the clean-energy spending aims at not only protecting the planet but also positively impacting the global economy by a 0.8% increase by the time 2050 reaches.
The report also found that 6 million jobs could also get realized from the renewable energy investments, and cited that any delays in implementing the actions to shift to cleaner energy systems would lead to more costs.
IRENA said this change won’t happen without critical investments and that around $145 trillion would be needed by mid-century for low-carbon technology investments. If the US were to leave the agreement, it would leave China and other big countries taking advantage of the opportunity. This would also dent Paris goals in regards to other nations making up for the US gap.
Last November marks the official enforcement of the treaty which states countries were in agreement to have global warming below 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit or 2 degrees Celsius, over the preindustrial levels all the way to 2100. The agreement also aims at reducing warming to 2.6 degrees Fahrenheit or 1.5 degrees Celsius.
The 2-degree goal would mean that carbon dioxide emissions related to energy get drastically lowered by using solar, wind among other renewable energy instead of coal and oil.
The energy agencies in their report stated that by 2050, the CO2 emissions should have gone down to 9.5 gigatons from 2015’s 32 gigatons; which translates to renewable energy covering 65% of the world’s power generation by middle century compared to today’s 24%.
Fossil fuel consumption by then should have also shrunk to a third of what’s getting used today.
The IRENA study was commissioned by Angela Merkel, a German Chancellor so that it could act as a framing for the G-20 economies’ upcoming energy discussions which started in Germany this week. Reuters reported on Saturday that G-20 bankers and finance ministers dropped their support in terms of funding to the climate change fight which was seen to be as a result of President Trump’s administration demands.