Clean Energy Transition Is Vital, Says UN Chief

Businesses in the UK have been prompted to consider hiring commercial energy consultants to improve their green credentials following a speech by the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General.

Earlier this week, Antonio Guterres spoke at the International Energy Agency’s (IEA) Clean Energy Transitions Summit, which is regarded as the largest meeting on energy and climate in the world.

While this year’s event had to be held virtually, Mr Guterres managed to make his opinion clear, telling world leaders: “Stop wasting money on fossil fuels subsidies and place a price on carbon.”

He noted that twice as much money has been spent on fossil fuels rather than clean energy, according to analysis of G20 recovery packages.

While praising the efforts of the EU, Nigeria and South Korea, he stated some countries have been guilty of supporting oil and gas companies.

“Others have chosen to jumpstart coal-fired power plants that don’t make financial or environmental sense,” Mr Guterres stated, adding: “Coal has no place in Covid-19 recovery plans.”

The Secretary-General noted that countries need to make changes following the pandemic, including investing in sustainability and renewable energy.

He emphasised the importance of achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, including cutting output by 45 per cent compared with 2010 levels by 2030.

The UK has been making headway with these ambitious plans, becoming the first major economy last June to pledge a balance of net-zero carbon emissions within the next 30 years. It promised to offset any greenhouse gas emissions with carbon capture schemes and planting trees.