Galvanising Low-Carbon Innovation

There is a need to scale up innovation efforts to reduce emissions cost-effectively beyond 2030 consistent with limiting dangerous climate change, in particular through supporting research, development and demonstration (RD&D) for technologies which have not yet been deployed at scale and are unlikely to without strong government support. While private sector investment in innovation is significant for nearer-to-market technologies, private and public RD&D for low-carbon solutions remains low – around 0.03–0.04% of GDP in International Energy Agency (IEA) member countries is devoted to public RD&D for low-carbon energy.

This report, in collaboration with New Climate Economy, outlines the key challenges for low-carbon innovation and identifies the high priority fields for international cooperation that are critical to avoiding the long-term and costly lock-in of carbon-intensive infrastructure (especially in buildings, electricity networks and transport systems), delivering development and climate priorities together (notably in agriculture), and enabling longer-term options for deep decarbonisation (such as carbon capture, storage and usage, energy storage, and bio-energy). It also identifies a critical need for cooperation to target or adapt innovations to developing-country needs.

Date: November 2016


New Climate Economy


Agriculture, Forestry & Land Use


Technology & Innovation


East Asia & Pacific