Goal 7: Affordable and clean Energy

Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all

No modern energy means no light in the evening, no communications technology, no modern medicine and no industrial production. More than one billion people around the world still live without electricity today.

Energy supplies have improved in recent years, especially for town and city dwellers. But humanity’s demand for energy keeps rising. The quantities of power used in industrialised countries like the USA and Germany are immense. Fossil fuels like coal and oil produce greenhouse gases and are largely responsible for climate change. We cannot continue to use them to generate the same amount of power. The use of fuelwood is not sustainable either.

What must be done?

Energy must not only be accessible to all – it must be generated cleanly and sustainably. The percentage of renewable energies including wind power, solar power and hydropower in the global energy mix must rise considerably. The international community must work to ensure that all countries can benefit equally from research and new technologies. It is also essential that they invest in energy infrastructure, especially in the least developed countries. Industry around the world will have to rethink its strategy and significantly reduce energy consumption. Efforts to date are not enough to double energy efficiency by 2030, as planned. 

Facts and figures

  • 65 per cent of the population of sub-Saharan Africa have no access to electricity. Globally the percentage of people with no access to electric power dropped from 21 to 15 per cent between 2000 and 2012.
  • About three billion people have to use environmentally hazardous fuels to cook; wood, coal or agricultural waste. Every year 1.5 million people die as a result of the air pollution caused by these cooking methods.
  • Coal, gas and oil are responsible for about 60 per cent of greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Around the globe, renewables are being used increasingly. In 2015, 23.7 per cent of electric power was generated from renewable sources.

7.1 Energy access for all

By 2030, ensure universal access to affordable, reliable and modern energy services

7.2 Promote renewable energy

By 2030, increase substantially the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix

7.3 Improve energy efficiency

By 2030, double the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency

7.a Access to research and technology

By 2030, enhance international cooperation to facilitate access to clean energy research and technology, including renewable energy, energy efficiency and advanced and cleaner fossil-fuel technology, and promote investment in energy infrastructure and clean energy technology

7.b Improve infrastructure in developing countries

By 2030, expand infrastructure and upgrade technology for supplying modern and sustainable energy services for all in developing countries, in particular least developed countries, small island developing States, and land-locked developing countries, in accordance with their respective programmes of support

“Renewable energies are becoming more cost-efficient. Around a third of the electricity in Germany already comes from wind, sun and biomass. The development associated with the transition has reduced costs so dramatically that affordable sustainable energy supply has become possible in emerging economies and developing countries as well.”

Source: BMUB

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