You are here

Blog Posts: energy

  • Tougher Greenhouse Goals Could Cut EU’s Gas Imports in Half

    Later this week, the European Council will decide on a target to further reduce the European Union’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2030. At issue is whether the Council will decide to reduce emissions by “at least 40 percent” from 1990 levels—leaving the door open to increase ambition in negotiation with other countries—or cap reductions at just 40 percent, locking in a lower goal and possibly influencing other countries to do the same.

  • Climate Action: Reduce Risk, Maximize Opportunities

    A new report delivers a simple, but powerful message: economic growth and climate action can be achieved together. Drawing on new evidence and hundreds of real-world examples, it focuses on opportunities to shift three key economic systems: energy, land use, and cities.

  • By the Numbers: The New Climate Economy

    How should politicians prioritize between robust economic growth and solving the problem of climate change?

    A new report reveals an encouraging answer: There’s no need to choose. Better Growth, Better Climate, finds that low-carbon investments—if done right—could cost about the same as conventional infrastructure, but would deliver significantly greater economic, social, and environmental benefits in the long-run.

  • A Tale of 3 Countries: Water Risks to Global Shale Development

    The shale gas revolution, which began nearly 10 years ago in the United States, is poised to spread across the globe. For many countries, shale gas could strengthen energy security while cutting emissions.

    But unlocking this massive resource comes with a significant environmental risk: access to freshwater for drinking, agriculture, and industrial use.

  • 40 Percent of Countries with Largest Shale Energy Resources Face Water Stress

    Dozens of countries are deciding whether or not to develop their shale gas and tight oil resources in order to reduce emissions, create new jobs, and increase national energy supplies. However, extracting natural gas and tight oil from shale poses water risk.

    We analyzed water stress levels in the 20 countries with the largest shale gas and tight oil resources, and found that 40 percent face high water stress.

  • The Plain Bad Economics of Today’s Energy Prices

    Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the IMF, recently launched the latest book in a series on what good fiscal policy should look like in a world of environmental externalities.

    The message was clear: Ministers of finance and economics should design their tax systems skillfully so as to tax bad things, like pollution and congestion, rather than good things like work and profit. Not to do so is plain, bad economics.

  • The Price Is Wrong: New Report Calls for Fossil Fuel Prices that Reflect Environmental Costs

    A new report from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Getting Energy Prices Right: From Principle to Practice, argues that the costs of coal, natural gas, gasoline, and diesel fail to account for these fuels’ environmental and social impacts—such as greenhouse gas emissions, air pollution, and traffic deaths.

    Setting prices that reflect these side effects—through taxes, licensing, or cap-and-trade systems—could reduce deaths from fossil fuel-related air pollution by 63 percent, decrease global carbon dioxide emissions by 23 percent, and generate revenues totaling about 2.6 percent of global GDP.

  • Closing the Renewable Energy Investment Gap

    There’s a growing gap between current investment in low-carbon energy and what’s needed to meet world demand while avoiding the worst impacts of climate change. The good news is there’s sufficient capital and investor interest to close much of this gap.

    However, policies that encourage market certainty and level the playing field between different energy sources are needed to attract the volume of investment required, according to a special International Energy Agency (IEA) report, the World Energy Investment Outlook, released this month.

Stay Connected

Sign up for our newsletters

Get the latest commentary, upcoming events, publications, maps and data. Sign up for the biweekly WRI Digest.