“Net Zero World” Initiative


By Tim Dixon

5 November 2021

The “Net-Zero World” initiative was launched at COP26 by US Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm and US Special Envoy John Kerry. This new initiative is intended to accelerate global energy system decarbonisation. It will support partner countries to achieve net zero in their energy systems. It will develop technical roadmaps and then fund technical assistance and capacity building, including access to expert assistance in the US, specifically from the national laboratories and financial support for in-country technical institutions.

The seven energy areas to be supported are buildings, industry, transport, power and energy storage, CCUS, agriculture, and energy.

The specific benchmarks include: by 2022 prepare or strengthen net zero energy technical, market, and investment plans and execute on near term opportunities; by 2023 implement key policies and programs for countries to achieve net zero transitions; by 2024 mobilize at least $10 billion in clean energy infrastructure and project investment; and by 2025 create new clean energy jobs, of which at least 50% are held by women and 40% benefit disadvantaged communities.

The US DOE will be providing $18m of seed funding, in collaboration with State Department and USAID, and with additional co-funding from philanthropies: Breakthrough Energy, the Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet, Lynne and Marc Benioff, Bloomberg, Salesforce, Rockefeller, and Bezos Earth Fund. The initial partner countries are Egypt, Indonesia, Nigeria, Argentina, Chile and Ukraine, and Ministers from Egypt, Indonesia, Nigeria and Ukraine attended the launch.

I attended the launch event at the US Pavilion in COP26, and one curious aspect which struck me were the answers to Secretary Granholm’s question on what did each participant want? For half of the four partner countries present, CCUS was the top area requested. Whereas the philanthropies all said they wanted to fund areas such as forests and renewable energy, none said CCUS. A discrepancy of priorities between those needing support and those keen to fund support.

It was pleasing to see the synergies with existing IEAGHG activities to support CCUS development and deployment around the world, including with our member in Indonesia.

For more information see www.nrel.gov/netzeroworld

US Special Envoy John Kerry. US Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm.

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