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G20 finance ministers urged to make energy efficiency an infrastructure priority

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As G20 finance ministers meet in Lima today, they are being urged by a global alliance to make energy efficiency an infrastructure priority.

The group of 38 major business groups and NGO’s from 18 countries have launched a statement calling on the G20 to recognise the huge potential for energy efficiency public investment to boost global economic productivity.

The G20 finance ministers will be using the Lima meeting to finalise their recommendations ahead of the G20 Heads of State Meeting in Antalya, Turkey on 15/16 November 2015.

During the next 15 years around US$90 trillion is likely to be invested globally in infrastructure. Focusing that investment on low carbon, energy efficient infrastructure is considered essential to keep the global temperature increase below 2°C and avoid dangerous climate change.

The alliance statement calls on the G20:

  • To treat energy efficiency as an public infrastructure priority.
  • To commit to undertake an assessment of the structural reforms needed to address financing barriers and grow markets to improve energy productivity.
  • To commit to delivering sufficient public funding to ensure equal access to finance among householders, and to leverage the large scale private finance need to repair and enhance out building infrastructure.

The International Energy Agency has also estimated that more than half the global investment to reduce emissions in the next 2 decades needs to be focused on energy efficiency. Much of the potential is in existing buildings that need to be refurbished. Significant state support will be needed both to mobilise private finance and ensure both the public and private building stock is refurbished. Making energy efficiency an infrastructure investment priority would unleash this investment.

Ingrid Holmes Director at E3G said:

“Given the multiple benefits of energy efficiency to boost economic productivity, improve health outcomes, reduce carbon emissions and cut energy bills, Governments must include energy efficiency as an infrastructure priority”.

Ada Amon, Senior Associate at E3G who led outreach efforts said today:

“80 per cent of global energy is consumed by G20 countries. If the G20 make energy efficiency an infrastructure priority it could make a huge dent in global energy consumption whilst boosting economic growth. No other infrastructure investment can do so much for so many.”

The recent G20 Energy Ministers Communiqué published on 2 October recognizes the benefits of energy efficiency to support energy security and the low carbon transition and welcomes the Voluntary Energy Efficiency Investment Principles for G20 participating countries.

Detailed analysis by Frontier Economics, commissioned by E3G, has found that the economic impact of energy efficiency investment is comparable to that of other major infrastructure investments such as building roads and railway lines. In the UK it could boost economic growth by over £8 Billion.

ENDS

Contact

Ingrid Holmes, +44 (0)207 593 2029, ingrid.holmes@e3g.org

Notes to Editors

G20 Statement: Prioritise Energy Efficiency as Infrastructure Investment.

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