World Off Track on Energy Goals, Millions Lack Electricity and Clean Cooking

New report finds progress needed to achieve universal access to sustainable energy by 2030

A new report by a consortium of international organizations reveals a worrying setback in achieving global energy goals. The world is significantly off track to reach Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG 7) by 2030, which aims for universal access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy.

The report highlights several areas of concern:

  • Access to electricity: For the first time in over a decade, the number of people without electricity increased in 2022. This is attributed to population growth outpacing new connections, with Sub-Saharan Africa being the most affected region.
  • Clean cooking: 2.1 billion people still lack access to clean cooking fuels and technologies, leading to health problems and environmental damage.
  • Slow progress on energy efficiency: The rate of improvement in energy efficiency remains insufficient to meet SDG targets.

Despite the setbacks, there are some bright spots:

  • Renewable energy growth: The use of renewable energy sources for electricity generation has seen robust growth in recent years.
  • Increased international commitment: Over 130 countries have pledged new global targets to accelerate renewable energy deployment and improve energy efficiency.

The report urges the international community to step up efforts by providing financial, technological, and policy support to bridge the energy access gap and achieve SDG 7. This includes focusing on:

  • Expanding access to electricity, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Promoting clean cooking solutions to improve health and environmental outcomes.
  • Significantly accelerating energy efficiency improvements.
  • Increasing investments in clean energy, especially in developing countries.

The report will be presented to policymakers in July, aiming to reignite global focus on achieving universal access to clean and sustainable energy for all.