• 10-August-2012


    Solar Heating and Cooling

    The solar heating and cooling (SHC) roadmap outlines a pathway for solar energy to supply almost one sixth (18 EJ) of the world’s total energy use for both heating and cooling by 2050.  This would save some 800 megatonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions per year; more than the total CO2 emissions in Germany in 2009. While solar heating and cooling today makes a modest contribution to world energy demand, the roadmap envisages that if concerted action is taken by governments and industry, solar energy could annually produce more than 16% of total final energy use for low temperature heat and nearly 17% for cooling.  Given that global energy demand for heat represents almost half of the world’s final energy use – more than the combined global demand for electricity and transport – solar heat can make a significant contribution in both tackling climate change and strengthening energy security.

  • 6-August-2012


    Carbon Capture and Storage in Industrial Applications

    The Technology Roadmap: Carbon Capture and Storage in Industrial Applications shows that carbon capture and storage (CCS) has the potential to reduce CO2 emissions from industrial applications by 4 gigatonnes in 2050. Such an amount is equal to roughly one-tenth of the total emission cuts needed to reduce emissions by 50% by the middle of the century. The roadmap focuses on five main industrial applications: high-purity CO2 sources, biomass conversion, cement, iron and steel and refineries. It sets out a vision of CCS in industrial applications up to 2050, including milestones that need to be achieved for technology, financing, policy and international collaboration.
  • 1-août-2012



    Ce rapport met en évidence les défis auxquels doivent faire face les producteurs et les consommateurs d’énergie, et la manière dont ils peuvent les relever par le jeu des politiques de croissance verte. Dans la mesure où l’énergie sous-tend l’économie mondiale, les décisions prises aujourd’hui dans le secteur énergétique joueront un rôle crucial dans la mise en oeuvre d’une croissance plus verte. C’est l’occasion ou jamais d’établir un cadre d’action en faveur de la transformation de ce secteur, notamment en encourageant l’innovation technologique et l’émergence de nouveaux marchés et de nouvelles industries, afin de réduire l’intensité carbone du secteur et d’améliorer l’efficacité énergétique.

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  • 30-juillet-2012


    L'évaluation environnementale stratégique dans la coopération pour le développement - Panorama des expériences récentes

    Les principes du développement durable jouent un rôle essentiel pour faire fonctionner l'aide au développement au niveau des politiques, projets et programmes.

    En réponse à l’appel de la Déclaration de Paris de ‘’… développer et mettre en œuvre des approches communes pour ‘l’Évaluation Environnementale Stratégique’ aux niveaux sectoriel et national’ entre les donateurs et les partenaires, le guide sur l’application de l'évaluation environnementale stratégique a été approuvé en 2006 par les membres du Comité d'aide au développement de l'OCDE,  des représentants des pays en développement qui bénéficient d'une aide, le Programme des Nations Unies pour le développement, le Programme des Nations Unies pour l'environnement, la Banque mondiale et de nombreux autres organismes. Depuis lors, de plus en plus de pays à tous les stades du développement disposent de lois ou de règlements prescrivant l'application de l’Évaluation Environnementale Stratégique (EES) et un nombre conséquent de pays le considèrent comme faisant partie de leurs instruments politiques. Cela crée des opportunités uniques pour améliorer l'élaboration et la planification des politiques en intégrant dans la prise des décisions de haut niveau des considérations environnementales et en créant de nouveaux mécanismes  pour établir un consensus sur les priorités de développement à l’intérieur des gouvernements et entre gouvernements et sociétés.  

    De nombreux organismes de coopération pour le Développement et leurs partenaires ont déjà réalisé des progrès satisfaisants dans la mise en œuvre de l’EES. Ce rapport présente les neuf études de cas les plus intéressantes sur l’EES en cours, sélectionnées parmi un total de 100 études de cas.

    Ces neuf études de cas montrent que l’EES peut :

    • Préserver les ressources environnementales pour réduire durablement la pauvreté et favoriser le développement;

    • Développer la capacité d'engagement de la population dans la prise de décision;

    • Éviter les erreurs coûteuses  en alertant les pouvoirs publics sur les solutions de développement potentiellement non durables à un stade précoce du processus décisionnel;

    • Accélérer la mise en œuvre des projets et des programmes;

    • Faciliter la coopération en matière de ressources environnementales communes et contribuer à la prévention des conflits.

  • 12-July-2012


    Energy Policies of IEA Countries: Ireland 2012

    The IEA's 2012 review of Ireland's energy policies and programmes finds that Ireland has suffered a significant economic downturn, but remains committed to its ambitious energy targets to bring the country towards a low-carbon economy.  Ireland’s location at the edge of the Atlantic Ocean ensures one of the best wind and ocean resources in Europe, and Ireland has set the ambitious target of producing 40% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2020. 

    Ireland is highly dependent on imported oil and gas.  While the push to develop renewable energies is commendable, this will result in an increased reliance on natural gas, as gas-fired power plants will be required to provide flexibility in electricity supply when wind power is unavailable.  With two-thirds of Ireland’s electricity already coming from gas-fired generation, this poses concerns with regard to gas security, particularly as 93% of its gas supplies come from a single transit point in Scotland.  In order to meet Ireland’s ambitious renewable targets and improve the island’s level of energy security, the country must successfully develop a range of gas and electricity infrastructure projects and market solutions while continuing to integrate its energy markets with regional neighbours.

    Ireland also has a pro-active energy efficiency policy, including a detailed National Energy Efficiency Action Plan outlining 90 measures and actions to be implemented in order to achieve the target of 20% energy savings in 2020.

    This review analyses the energy-policy challenges currently facing Ireland, and provides sectoral studies and recommendations for the further policy improvements.  It is intended to help guide the country towards a more secure and sustainable energy future.
  • 11-July-2012


    OECD Reviews of Innovation Policy: Slovenia 2012

    This review of innovation policy in Slovenia offers a comprehensive assessment of Slovenia's innovation system, focusing on the role of government. It provides concrete recommendations and identifies good practices.

  • 3-July-2012


    Energy Policies of IEA Countries: Switzerland 2012

    This 2012 IEA review of Swiss energy policies finds that Switzerland has taken bold decisions to gradually phase out nuclear power and to reduce by a fifth its greenhouse gas emissions by 2020 with domestic measures only. These are challenging objectives, and the country now needs to identify the most viable ways to meet them at least cost and minimum risk to energy security.

    In the absence of nuclear power, maintaining sufficient electricity capacity will require strong policies to promote energy efficiency and renewable energy. Such measures have already been outlined, but they will likely not be enough. For baseload generation, gas-fired power plants would be the simplest option. Treating their CO2 emissions the same way as in the neighbouring countries would be a strong positive incentive for investors.

    Because Switzerland’s energy-related CO2 emissions come mostly from oil use in transport and space heating, action is most needed in these areas. Commendably, the country is making polluters pay by using a CO2 tax for financing decarbonisation efforts in space heating. Stronger efforts will be needed to reduce emissions from private car use, however.

    Since the 2007 IEA energy policy review, Switzerland has made clear progress in electricity market reform. Moving to a fully open market by 2015 would be a further positive step. The system of regulated end-user prices, however, is subsidising electricity consumption at a time when low-carbon power supply is becoming more constrained and expensive. It should be reconsidered. Switzerland should also continue to take an increasingly European approach to developing its electricity infrastructure, to its own benefit and to that of its neighbours.
  • 26-June-2012


    Systemic Financial Risk

    This report analyses the results of simulations using an agent based model of financial markets to show how excessive levels of leverage in financial markets can lead to a systemic crash.  Investors overload on risky assets betting more than they have to gamble creating a tremendous level of vulnerability in the system as a whole.  Plummeting asset prices render banks unable or unwilling to provide credit as they fear they might be unable to cover their own liabilities due to potential loan defaults.  Whether an overleveraged borrower is a sovereign nation or major financial institution, recent history illustrates how defaults carry the risk of contagion in a globally interconnected economy. The resulting slowdown of investment in the real economy impacts actors at all levels, from small businesses to homebuyers. Bankruptcies lead to job losses and a drop in aggregate demand, leading to more businesses and individuals being unable to repay their loans, reinforcing a downward spiral that can trigger a recession, depression or bring about stagflation in the real economy. This can have a devastating impact not only on economic prosperity across the board, but also consumer sentiment and trust in the ability of the system to generate long-term wealth and growth.   

  • 21-June-2012


    Methods for Safety Assessment of Geological Disposal Facilities for Radioactive Waste - Outcomes of the NEA MeSA Initiative

    Safety assessment is an interdisciplinary approach that focuses on the scientific understanding and performance assessment of safety functions as well as the hazards associated with a geological disposal facility. It forms a central part of the safety case, and the results of the safety assessments provide evidence to support decision making. The goals of the NEA project on “Methods for Safety Assessment for Geological Disposal Facilities for Radioactive Waste” (MeSA) were to examine and document methods used in safety assessment for radioactive waste disposal facilities, to generate collective views based on the methods’ similarities and differences, and to identify future work. The project reviewed a number of approaches used by various national and international organisations. Following the comprehensive review, a generic safety case with a safety assessment flowchart was developed and is presented herein. The elaboration of the safety concept, the use of safety functions, the implication of uncertainties and the formulation of scenarios are also discussed.

  • 18-June-2012


    The Role of Nuclear Energy in a Low-carbon Energy Future

    This report assesses the role that nuclear energy can play in supporting the transition to a low-carbon energy system. It begins by considering the greenhouse gas emissions from the full nuclear fuel cycle, reviewing recent studies on indirect emissions and assessing the impact that nuclear power could make in reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

    The report provides estimates of the construction rates that would be needed to meet the projected expansion of nuclear power foreseen by many energy scenarios published by international organisations. It then assesses the economic, technical, societal and institutional challenges represented by such an expansion to identify the most significant barriers. The capacity of nuclear power plants to operate in an electricity system with a large share of renewables, and the impact of smart grid technologies are also examined. Finally, long-term prospects for nuclear energy are discussed in terms of development of new reactor and fuel cycle technologies, non-electric applications and new operational and regulatory constraints that could arise as a consequence of climate change.

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