IEA Report Concludes Decarbonization of Nordic Countries Possible by 2050

IEA22 January 2013: The International Energy Agency (IEA) has published a report detailing how the Nordic region can become carbon neutral by 2050. The report, titled “Nordic Energy Technology Perspectives: Pathways to a Carbon Neutral Energy Future,” is IEA's first regional edition of its flagship publication series “Energy Technology Perspectives.”

The report considers pathways to carbon neutrality through changes in electricity generation and district heating, industry, transport, and buildings in the five Nordic countries: Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden.

Advances in these areas will make a near complete decarbonization by 2050 possible in these countries, if, according to the report, electricity generation becomes carbon neutral, which will require the share of electricity generation from wind to increase to 25% from its current level of 3%. It will also require a 60% reduction in direct industry emissions through energy efficiency and carbon capture and storage (CCS), as well as dramatic cuts in transport emissions from 80 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (MtCO2) in 2010 to 10 MtCo2 in 2050.

The report further concludes that regional cooperation, market-based mechanisms, and research, development and demonstration (RD&D) have positioned Nordic countries to achieve their climate and energy targets, which are among the most ambitious in the world.

The IEA developed the report in cooperation with leading Nordic research institutes and Norden Nordic Energy Research, a subsidiary of the Nordic Council of Ministers. [Publication: Nordic Energy Technology Perspectives] [IEA News Release]