The ITF is an intergovernmental organisation within the OECD to tackle mobility issues for the 21st century. The Forum acts as a platform to advance transport policy and practice, with a view to ensuring transport's contribution to economic growth, environmental protection, social inclusion and the preservation of human life and well-being. The ITF 2014 annual Summit is being held in Leipzig, Germany on 21-23 may 2014.
Twenty years ago climate change was viewed as just an environmental issue. Today it is squarely an economic issue. Climate change poses significant risks to our economic systems that could result in very large damages. To mitigate these risks we need to radically transform our economies and societies to stop global warming.
The OECD’s 34 member countries today affirmed their common resolve to work towards a deal on combating climate change at the COP21 talks in Paris in 2015. OECD accession countries Colombia and Latvia joined the statement issued at the Organisation’s annual Ministerial Council Meeting, attended by finance, economy, trade and other ministers.
Electricity shortages can paralyse our modern economies. All governments fear rolling black-outs and their economic consequences, especially in economies increasingly based on digital technologies.
Over the last two decades, the development of markets for power has produced cost reduction, technological innovation, increased cross border trade and assured a steady supply of electricity. Now, IEA countries face the challenge of maintaining security of electricity supply during the transition to low-carbon economies.
Low-carbon policies are pushing electricity markets into novel territories at a time when most of the generation and network capacity will have to be replaced. Most notably, wind and solar generation, now an integral part of electricity markets, can present new operating and investment challenges for generation, networks and the regional integration of electricity markets. In addition, the resilience of power systems facing more frequent natural disasters is also of increasing concern.
IEA ministers mandated the Secretariat to work on the Electricity Security Action Plan (ESAP), expanding to electricity the energy security mission of the IEA. This paper outlines the key conclusions and policy recommendations to "keep the lights on" while reducing CO
2 emissions and increasing the efficiency.
Energy Policy Highlights showcases what the 28 IEA member countries identified as key recent developments in their energy policies. Each country contribution covers a range of energy-related topics, with best practices and policy examples from their respective governments, including objectives, characteristics, challenges and successes, and shared lessons. Each contribution underscores the changing nature of both global and domestic energy challenges, as well as the commonality of energy concerns among member countries. For example, many of the policies highlighted identify an urgent need to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions as a clear objective. Electricity, enhancing energy efficiency and increasing the share of renewables in the energy mix in a cost effective manner are likewise areas of common focus. Overall, the energy concerns reflect key areas of focus for the IEA – energy security, environmental protection and economic development.
On the end-user side, increasing public awareness of domestic energy policies through improved transparency and engagement is an important facet of policy support among IEA member countries. The successful implementation of policies and other initiatives benefitted from efforts to inform the public. The IEA hopes that Energy Policy Highlights will provide a useful point of reference and dialogue for the 2013 IEA Ministerial, and will help advance the Agency’s well-established practice of co-operation and worldwide engagement through the sharing of experiences, best practices and lessons learned, among IEA member countries and partner countries alike.
This edition of Better Policies for Development focuses on illicit financial flows and their detrimental effects on development and growth. Every year, huge sums of money are transferred out of developing countries illegally. The numbers are disputed, but illicit financial flows are often cited as outstripping official development aid and inward investment. These flows strip resources from developing countries that could be used to finance much-needed public services, such as health care and education.
This report defines policy coherence for development as a global tool for creating enabling environments for development in a post-2015 context. It shows that coherent policies in OECD countries in areas such as tax evasion, anti-bribery and money laundering can contribute to reducing illicit financial flows from developing countries. It also provides an update on OECD efforts to develop a monitoring matrix for policy coherence for development, based upon existing OECD indicators of ‘policy effort’. The report also includes contributions from member states. Most illustrate national processes to deal with policy coherence for development beyond 2015.
Since the last review in 2008, the Netherlands has attracted investment in oil and gas storage; coal, oil and gas import terminals; and efficient power plants. This additional capacity provides flexibility and energy security both in the Netherlands and across EU markets. However, the outlook for Europe’s second-largest producer of natural gas is challenging amid declining gas production and uncertain prospects for unconventional gas. Developing the remaining natural gas potential, the market integration and ensuring the security of supply and resilience of the energy infrastructure during the transition should be top priorities.
The Netherlands stimulates energy efficiency and innovation in energy-intensive industries along the whole supply chain, notably in the Dutch refining, petrochemical and agriculture sectors, a practice that contributes to industrial competitiveness.
Despite successful decoupling of greenhouse-gas emissions from economic growth between 1990 and 2012, however, the Netherlands remains one of the most fossil-fuel- and CO2-intensive economies among IEA countries. In September 2013, the Netherlands reached an agreement with key stakeholders on priority actions to support sustainable economic growth through 2020. In addition to implementing the agreement, the government must set the scene for a stable policy framework up to 2030, which is also crucial for renewable energies.
The Netherlands has accelerated permit procedures for new energy infrastructure and is driving technology cost reduction with reformed renewable support. The country can benefit from further interconnections with neighbouring countries, as renewables become an integral part of wholesale and balancing electricity markets in the EU.
This review analyses the energy policy challenges currently facing the Netherlands, and provides recommendations for each sector. It gives advice on implementing the Energy Agreement and how to leverage international opportunities from clean energy technologies. It is only available in PDF format.
Climate-related disasters have inflicted increasingly high losses on developing countries, and with climate change, these losses are likely to worsen. Improving country resilience against climate risks is therefore vital for achieving poverty reduction and economic development goals.
This report discusses the current state of knowledge on how to build climate resilience in developing countries. It argues that climate-resilient development requires moving beyond the climate-proofing of existing development pathways, to consider economic development objectives and resilience priorities in parallel. Achieving this will require political vision and a clear understanding of the relation between climate and development, as well as an adapted institutional set-up, financing arrangements, and progress monitoring and evaluation. The report also discusses two priorities for climate-resilient development: disaster risk management and the involvement of the private sector.
The report builds on a growing volume of country experiences on building climate resilience into national development planning. Two country case studies, Ethiopia and Colombia, are discussed in detail.
This report is the first OECD review of Colombia’s environmental performance. It evaluates progress towards sustainable development and green growth, with a focus on waste and chemicals management and policies that promote more effective and efficient protection and sustainable use of biodiversity.
The International Energy Agency's 2014 review of Austria’s energy policy analyses the energy policy challenges facing Austria and provides sectoral studies and recommendations for further policy improvements. It finds that Austria's energy policy rests on three pillars – security of supply, energy efficiency and renewable energy sources.
The country’s decarbonisation drive has strengthened as the economy and renewable energy use have continued to grow, while fossil fuel use has decreased. Notably, Austria has more than tripled the public funding for energy research, development and demonstration since 2007.
Greenhouse gas emissions from energy use, which peaked in 2005, still need to be reduced further, and the transport sector offers prime opportunities for this. In the context of EU negotiations on an energy and climate policy framework to 2030, Austria should develop a strategy that also integrates security of supply and internal market dimensions.
Closer cross-border integration of both electricity and natural gas markets and systems is required to build a single European market. This calls for increased co-ordination and co-operation with neighbouring countries. Austria should also encourage investment in networks, optimise demand response and integrate variable renewable energy supply in a cost-effective and market-based manner.
A well-functioning internal market can help reduce the growing concerns over energy prices and costs, both for industry and for citizens. Austria could address these concerns also by implementing more energy efficiency measures and facilitating greater retail market competition.