CEEW Study Flags Concentration Of Clean Energy Manufacturing As Global Risk

Highlights :

  • Two government-commissioned studies by CEEW claimed a few selected countries’ global clean energy market dominations.
  • The study batted for an affordable and interrupted supply of critical renewable energy technologies worldwide.
CEEW Study Flags Concentration Of Clean Energy Manufacturing As Global Risk

Two studies conducted by the researchers at the Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW) have batted for an interrupted and affordable supply of critical clean energy technologies across the globe. The report said this was needed for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and for a risk-free energy transition towards renewable energy. 

The Indian government commissioned the study to CEEW to inform the G20 Energy Transition Working Group (ETWG) negotiations. The G20 Global Summit is slated to happen this year in India under the presidency of India.

The CEEW report claimed that the whole gamut of popular renewable energy solutions-solar, wind, battery storage, and green hydrogen is concentrated only in very few selected countries. For example, it claimed that around 70 percent of the global exports of solar PV were confined to only four countries. Similarly, only four countries accounted for more than 80 percent of the total exports in the last decade for wind energy.

The report claimed these renewable energy sources depend highly on the much-needed manufacturing, logistics, and infrastructure support. It is in addition to certain critical minerals, materials, and technologies. The report claimed that while the cost of manufacturing has come down significantly in the past few years, the trend of exports has followed a different suit. The report batted for international collaborations on technology sharing and other fronts for a sustainable global energy transition towards renewables. 

“The rapid adoption of RE will not only help decarbonize the electricity systems but also help realize the desired impacts of the SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals). However, a speedy and risk-proof transition to RE will only be possible if countries can secure access to uninterrupted and affordable supply chains of key technologies,” the report said. 

The CEEW report recommended ensuring a comprehensive tracking of the global manufacturing of clean energy capacity and sharing trade flow data, and dedicated financing for the manufacturing sector through several development banks. The report also talked about co-developing technologies and innovations. This, the report said, is possible by sharing the best practices on public procurement and increasing collaborations between technology-development labs worldwide.

Another report by the CEEW on critical minerals also talked about the concentration of certain critical minerals like Lithium, Cobalt, and others in selected countries. These are mainly used in Lithium-ion batteries, electric vehicles, energy storage systems, and others. Therefore, this report recommended developing a shared vision of these critical elements for increasing the supply. 

“We recommend specific action points to increase mineral supply. First, there is an urgent need to institutionalize periodic assessments of the critical mineral value chain. The G20 should also support investments in developing new exploration and mining technologies. Finally, the group must examine the creation of a strategic stockpile of critical minerals,” the report said.

The report also recommended increasing international mineral security by decreasing dependency on these elements and also promoting re-use. 

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