The global energy transition – measured in terms of security, accessibility and sustainability – has stagnated in the last five years, because although more people have energy, progress has been almost nil from an environmental point of view.
A report analysing this issue published today by the World Economic Forum states that energy systems are “less affordable (for consumers) and no more sustainable for the environment than they were five years ago”.
According to their progress in this area, fifty-four countries with advanced economies are ranked in an index in which Spain occupies 27th place, ahead of the United States (28).
The ranking is led by Sweden, followed by Switzerland and the rest of the Nordic countries, while the first two major European economies to appear are the United Kingdom in seventh place and France in eighth.
This assessment criticises the world’s most important economies for their unwillingness to tackle the most important challenges of the energy transition.
The World Economic Forum recalls that the countries that rank highest in the index represent barely 2.6% of annual global emissions.
Currently, fewer than 1 billion people live without electricity, indicating that access has increased year by year, but this has been achieved in some cases at the cost of imposing prices that are not affordable for the poorest in some countries.
In relation to the environment, the report points out that the stagnation in the energy transition has among its main reasons that coal continues to be used massively for energy production in Asia.
Fossil fuels account for 81% of primary energy supply, a proportion that has remained almost unchanged over the last three decades, according to the report.
For the first time in three years, coal consumption increased in 2018, it is added.
This explains why carbon dioxide emissions are projected to increase by more than 2% in 2018, which if confirmed will be the highest level since 2014.
Latin America and the Caribbean is the region in the world that achieves the best score in environmental sustainability in the context of the energy transition thanks to its hydroelectric generation capacity.