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Tracking SDG7: The Energy Progress Report 2023


A recent report, titled “Tracking SDG7: The Energy Progress Report 2023,” was released through collaboration between the International Energy Agency (IEA), International Renewable Energy Agency, United Nations Statistics Division, World Bank, and the WHO.


GS III: Indian Economy

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Sustainable Development Goal 7
  2. Major Highlights of the Report

Sustainable Development Goal 7

  • In 2015, all United Nations Member States adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
  • The agenda includes 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aimed at achieving a harmonious and prosperous future for humanity and the planet.
  • Agenda 21 was adopted in 1992 at the Earth Summit, outlining a global partnership for sustainable development.
  • The Millennium Declaration in 2000 led to the establishment of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) to reduce extreme poverty.
Current Status:
  • The annual High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development serves as the central UN platform for SDG follow-up and review.
  • The Division for Sustainable Development Goals (DSDG) in the UN provides support for the SDGs and related issues.
Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG7):

SDG7 aims to ensure “affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all” by 2030.

Core targets:

  • Target 7.1: Universal access to affordable, reliable, and modern energy services.
  • Target 7.2: Substantial increase in the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix.
  • Target 7.3: Double the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency.
  • Target 7.a: Enhance international cooperation for clean energy research, technology, and investment.
  • Target 7.b: Upgrade infrastructure and technology for sustainable energy services in developing countries.

Major Highlights of the Report:

Economic Factors Hindering SDG 7:
  • Factors like high inflation, uncertain macroeconomic outlook, debt distress, and limited financial flows are hindering the achievement of SDG 7.
  • Uncertain macroeconomic outlook and high inflation levels create challenges.
  • Currency fluctuations and debt distress in many countries affect progress.
  • Lack of financing and supply chain bottlenecks pose obstacles.
  • Tighter fiscal circumstances and soaring prices for materials have a negative impact.
Access to Electricity and Clean Cooking:
  • Global access to electricity increased from 84% to 91% between 2010 and 2021, but the growth rate has slowed.
  • The number of people without electricity decreased from 1.1 billion in 2010 to 675 million in 2021.
  • Universal access to electricity by 2030 is still a challenging goal.
  • Access to clean cooking improved from 2.9 billion people in 2010 to 2.3 billion in 2021, but approximately 1.9 billion people may still lack access by 2030.
  • Some people who recently transitioned to clean cooking may revert to traditional biomass usage.
  • Sub-Saharan Africa is projected to have the highest number of people without access to clean cooking by 2030.
Renewable Energy (Target 7.2):
  • Renewable energy uptake has increased since 2010 but needs significant scaling up.
  • The share of renewable energy in total final energy consumption is still low at 19.1% (12.5% excluding traditional biomass).
  • Meeting international climate and energy goals requires substantial investments in renewable electricity generation and infrastructure.
Energy Efficiency (Target 7.3):
  • The current rate of improvement in energy efficiency is not on track to double by 2030.
  • The average annual growth of 1.8% falls short of the targeted increase of 2.6% per year.
International Public Financial Flows (Target 7.a):
  • Financial flows supporting clean energy in developing countries have declined since 2020.
  • Financial resources are more than a third lower than the previous decade’s average (2010-2019).
  • Decreasing financial flows mainly affect a few countries, posing challenges for SDG 7, particularly for least-developed countries, landlocked developing countries, and small island developing states.

-Source: Down To Earth


February 2024