WASHINGTON, D.C. – A new report from the Energy Transitions Commission (ETC) has suggested the heavy-duty transport industry can achieve net-zero carbon emissions at minimal costs to the global economy, through ambitious policy, accelerated innovation and investment.
The report says it’s technically and financially feasible to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2060 – earlier in developed countries – at a cost of less than 0.5% of global GDP. The report was titled Mission Possible: Reaching net-zero carbon emissions from harder-to-abate sectors by mid-century.
More than 200 industry experts were involved in its development. It concluded that full decarbonation is technically possible using technologies that already exist, although some have not yet met commercial readiness. Green shipping, the report concluded, would only add $1 to the price of an imported pair of jeans.
Electric trucks and buses are urged, and likely to be cost-competitive by 2020, the report concluded.
Shipping was one of the most challenging sectors identified, because of the high cost of decarbonization and the fragmented structure of the industry. The report suggests: tightening carbon-intensity mandates on heavy-duty transport; introducing adequate carbon pricing, using internationally agreed on pricing systems; and investing in green technologies through R&D support.
The ETC says it’s committed to achieving a net-zero carbon economy by mid-century.
“They are convinced that succeeding in that historic endeavour would not only limit the harmful impact of climate change, but would also drive prosperity and deliver important local environmental benefits,” a press release on the new report read.
“This report sets out an optimistic but completely realistic message – we can build a zero-carbon economy with a minor cost to economic growth,” said Adair Turner, co-chairman of the ETC. “We should now commit to achieving this by 2060 at the latest, and put in place the policies and investments required to deliver it.”