G20 stimulus packages ‘missed opportunity’ to accelerate green energy, analysis finds

The UK could reach a 60 per cent renewable power system by 2025 were it to shift Covid-19 energy sector recovery funds from fossil fuels to green power, report concludes

Stimulus packages aimed at supporting the recovery of G20 countries’ energy industries are heavily weighted in favour of fossil fuels, marking a significant “missed opportunity” to accelerate the transition to renewable power in the wake of Covid-19, research today has found.

Overall, G20 governments have committed at least $145bn towards supporting clean energy as part of economic stimulus measures to recover from the impact of the pandemic, according to the analysis, around two-thirds the size of the total $216bn committed to supporting fossil fuel energy.

Finnish energy technology firm Wärtsilä, which carried out the research, said the failure to use the post-pandemic stimulus reponse to shift away from fossil fuels towards renewables technologies on a much larger scale represents a significant “missed opportunity” to accelerate the pace of the clean energy transition worldwide.

In the UK, £3.8bn-worth of energy stimulus commitments are set to support fossil fuel production, dwarfing the £121m earmarked for for clean power generation, according to the study.

Such a gulf in investment levels thta favours fossil fuels does not align with the UK’s ambitious targets to achieve 57 per cent greenhouse reduction by 2030 compared with 1990 levels, and to reach net zero emissions by 2050, it said.

The report, which analysed recovery programmes of G20 countries including the UK and USA, modeled what could have been

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