The IPCC published the final part of its Sixth Assessment (“AR6”), the Working Group III report, on April 4, 2022. The IPCC's Working Group III report contains assessments of how the energy transition can reduce emissions in the context of an updated outlook for global warming. Together, the three reports of AR6 comprise over 6,000 pages of material, so we have chosen to focus our coverage on the Working Group III report, which we present in two episodes.
In this first episode on AR6, we speak with one of the lead authors of the Working Group III report, energy researcher Benjamin Sovacool of the University of Sussex. We discuss some major advances in AR6 over the AR5 report of eight years ago; the gaps between our national climate action ambitions, what is really needed to limit warming to 1.5 or 2°C, and some ways that those gaps can be closed; how market-based financial approaches can be harnessed to reduce carbon; the importance of equity and “just transition” strategies; the challenge of path dependency and technology lock-in; how political economy can inhibit taking action on climate; the roles that non-government actors and individuals can play in the transition; and the various ways of decarbonizing transportation and providing better low-carbon mobility.
Our second episode on AR6, Episode #173, will review the updated figures for the remaining carbon budget, and consider the pathways and probabilities for limiting warming to 1.5 and 2°C.
Dr. Benjamin Sovacool is Professor of Energy Policy, Director of the Sussex Energy Group, and Director of the Center on Innovation and Energy Demand at the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU), part of the School of Business, Management, and Economics at the University of Sussex in Brighton, UK. Professor Sovacool works as a researcher and consultant on issues pertaining to energy policy, energy security, climate change mitigation, and climate change adaptation. His research focuses on renewable energy and energy efficiency, the politics of large-scale energy infrastructure, designing public policy to improve energy security and access to electricity, and building adaptive capacity to the consequences of climate change. He is the author of more than 380 refereed articles, book chapters, and reports, including solely authored pieces in Nature and Science, and the author, coauthor, editor, or coeditor of 18 books on energy and climate change topics.
Recording date: March 25, 2022
Air date: May 11, 2022
Geek rating: 5