he world needs energy efficiency, now more than ever. Energy efficiency has a critical role to play for the climate,sustainable development and human prosperity. According to recent figures, energy efficiency alone could have the potential to help countries achieve nearly 40% in GHG emissions reductions by 2040 to be in line with the Paris Agreement. Considering the growth in emissions in 2017 and the rapid decarbonisation required to limit the impacts of climate change, the world needs to act immediately.
Energy efficiency has been prioritised by G20 members and has also become one of the pillars of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, due to its contribution to energy security, industrial competitiveness, emissions reduction, economic growth, job creation and others social benefits when introduced in a cost-effective manner. International collaboration, including through the G20, is crucial to ensure that energy efficiency measures are implemented widely, quickly and cost-effectively by countries, institutions and businesses. In recognition of this, G20 members adopted the G20 Energy Efficiency Leading Programme (EELP) in 2016, which gives energy efficiency cooperation the necessary long-term time horizon, up to 2030 and possibly beyond, to deliver even greater benefits for each member. The International Partnership for Energy Efficiency Cooperation (IPEEC) is proud to be the coordinating organisation of the G20’s collaborative energy efficiency activities.
Efforts continue to grow. In 2018 under the Argentinian G20 Presidency, energy efficiency was a priority, with the implementation of the EELP across sectors and the promotion of several critical elements that contribute to the success of energy efficiency policy options, such as Behaviour Change initiatives. The G20 Energy Ministers
in their Communiqué noted the potential for such initiatives to act as “a bridge between innovation, technological progress, and nationally driven energy efficiency measures, [and to deliver] greater benefits for consumers and all sectors of the economy.” Concretely, how can behavioural insights benefit energy efficiency? More and more, there is a growing awareness of the complementary role of the human dimension to technology and innovation in delivering the full energy efficiency potential required to achieve the world’s energy and environmental goals. Understanding the human dimension and drivers behind economic development, consumption habits, and social norms can help define policies that can improve countries’ respective energy efficiency. Energy users’ behaviour is a key factor influencing the way they respond to energy efficiency policies and whether they choose (or not) to adopt energy efficient technologies and services. Therefore, incorporating an understanding of energy users’ behaviour into the design of policies, business models and technologies is crucial for realising energy efficiency goals.
There are various opportunities for international collaboration on behaviour change, for instance, information sharing and data collection is one such example. In terms of information and
experience sharing, international partnerships could increase the awareness of behaviour change and facilitate cooperative studies to capture best practices and case studies on successful business models, policies and programmes. Open, thought-provoking discussions at the international level on the failures of interventions would also be valuable, providing opportunities for reflection and learning. Regarding data collection, international collaboration could help improve the comparability of end-use data gathered through trials and evaluations, allowing for better comparisons of consumers’ behaviours across different jurisdictions. Moreover, international surveys could help to understand how different contexts (socio-cultural, economic, technological, etc.) influence behaviour change for energy efficiency in different regions, which could help then to inform the design of replicable behaviour change policies and programmes.
Thanks to the leadership of the G20, there is a strong framework for international cooperation on behaviour change as well as all the other energy efficiency opportunities. Given the importance of human behaviour to the success or failure of energy efficiency interventions, more attention, efforts and investments are needed to facilitate further studies on this topic. IPEEC will continue to play a central role in coordinating the potential work related to behaviour change under the sectoral work streams of the EELP, including on transport, appliances, buildings, data and finance, among others.
Gathering here together at COP 24, we must bear in mind the importance of international collaboration for energy efficiency and wider sustainable development. By making collaborative efforts, we will move faster to a more sustainable and prosperous world.
The International Partnership for Energy Efficiency Cooperation (IPEEC) is an autonomous partnership of 17 major economies founded in 2009 by the G8 to promote global cooperation on energy efficiency. Its member economies together account for over 80% of global energy use and 85% of energy-related GHG emissions. Since 2014, IPEEC has been coordinating the G20’s energy efficiency activities under the group’s two plans – the G20 Energy Efficiency Action Plan (2014) and the G20 Energy Efficiency Leading Programme (2016). There are currently nine dedicated task groups under the G20 Energy Efficiency Leading Programme.
IPEEC is based in Paris, France. Find out more information at
By Benoit Lebot, Executive Director, IPEEC