All countries have large amounts of an untapped and cost-effective fuel resource – energy efficiency. At COP28, countries pledged to double the global average annual rate of energy efficiency improvements by 2030. In Asia and the Pacific, progress on energy efficiency remains slow, with a few exceptions such as India, the People’s Republic of China and Singapore. How critical are government policies in increasing public and private sector investment in energy efficiency? What are the policies needed to create an enabling environment and de-risk projects? How can the private sector, including financial intermediaries and energy service companies, be key players in the energy efficiency market? The four main areas of discussion in this Thematic Track will include:
- Energy Efficiency Policies: There are proven successful energy efficiency policies that can be implemented today with immediate large-scale impacts at low cost. What has been the impact and achievements of minimum energy performance standards and labelling, building codes, fuel economy standards, energy management systems, energy efficiency revolving funds, public procurement, taxation and others? How are energy efficiency policies being quickly deployed in developing countries? Which countries in Asia and the Pacific have been leading on energy efficiency policies, and where did they start? How have these policies resulted in increased investment by the private sector?
- Energy Efficiency in Buildings: Today, buildings account for one-third of global energy consumption and emissions and likely to increase substantially with growing urbanization. New construction will account for the majority of building energy use across the region in the next decade; but at the same time, the opportunity for investment in green building retrofits is billions of dollars per year across the region. What are the policies needed to ensure that existing buildings are upgraded and modernized to reduce the need for energy for electricity, heating and/or cooling? What can governments do to incentivize investment in new green and affordable buildings by the private sector? How can local governments play a leading role to ensure compliance with building codes? How can the private sector support the government to reduce energy consumed by buildings including embodied carbon in cement?
- Energy Efficient Heating and Cooling: Heating and cooling of enclosed spaces and of water account for the majority of energy use worldwide, particularly in buildings, industries and cities. Fossil fuels are the dominant source of fuel supplying essential heating and cooling in Asia and the Pacific. Air conditioning has become one of the main drivers for growing electricity demand in South Asia and Southeast Asia. In Central Asia, many of the heating supply and distribution systems are old, inefficient, and in urgent need of modernization. However, the heating tariffs are subsidized and do not reflect actual production costs. What are governments doing to address these challenges and promote the efficient use of heating and cooling, including through district heating, solar thermal and heat pumps? How are national cooling action plans and strategies being deployed in the region? What are the best available technologies to deliver more efficient cooling and heating to buildings, industries and cities in the region? What has been the role of the private sector in investing and providing energy services to support more efficient heating and/or cooling systems? What approaches have governments been using to raise consumer awareness on energy efficiency in heating and cooling?
- Energy Efficiency in Transport and Cities: Currently, half of the global population lives in cities. Cities account for two-thirds of global energy consumption and 70% of annual global carbon emissions. With increasing urbanization, the amount of energy used by transportation, buildings and cities is expected to increase considerably in Asia and the Pacific, where most of the housing is yet to be built. How can cities plan for a climate resilient future with energy efficiency at its core? What is the role of local governments in delivering energy efficiency investments across all sectors? How can cities embed energy efficiency in transport, water, buildings, street lighting and other sectors? How can energy efficiency investments be done by the private sector in cities with limited resources?