Between 1990 and 2010, the number of people with access to electricity has increased by 1.7 billion, and as the global population continues to rise so will the demand for cheap energy. A global economy reliant on fossil fuels, and the increase of greenhouse gas emissions is creating drastic changes to our climate system. This is impacting every continent.
Globally, more than 800 million people are still living on less than US$1.25 a day, many lacking access to adequate food, clean drinking water and sanitation. Rapid economic growth in countries like China and India has lifted millions out of poverty, but progress has been uneven. Women are more likely to live in poverty than men due to unequal access to paid work, education and property.
Efforts to encourage clean energy has resulted in more than 20 percent of global power being generated by renewable sources as of 2011. But still one in five people lack access to electricity, and as the demand continues to rise there needs to be a substantial increase in the production of renewable energy across the world.
Ensuring universal access to affordable electricity by 2030 means investing in clean energy sources such as solar, wind and thermal. Adopting cost-effective standards for a wider range of technologies could also reduce the global electricity consumption by buildings and industry by 14 percent. This means avoiding roughly 1,300 mid-size power plants. Expanding infrastructure and upgrading technology to provide clean energy in all developing countries is a crucial goal that can both encourage growth and help the environment.
Everyone can help to make sure that we meet the Global Goals. Use these five targets to create action to ensure universal access to sustainable energy.
UNIVERSAL ACCESS TO MODERN ENERGY
By 2030, ensure universal access to affordable, reliable and modern energy services.
INCREASE GLOBAL PERCENTAGE OF RENEWABLE ENERGY
By 2030, increase substantially the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix.
DOUBLE THE IMPROVEMENT IN ENERGY EFFICIENCY
By 2030, double the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency.
PROMOTE ACCESS TO RESEARCH, TECHNOLOGY AND INVESTMENTS IN CLEAN ENERGY
By 2030, enhance international cooperation to facilitate access to clean energy research and technology, including renewable energy, energy efficiency and advanced and cleaner fossil-fuel technology, and promote investment in energy infrastructure and clean energy technology.
EXPAND AND UPGRADE ENERGY SERVICES FOR DEVELOPING COUNTRIES
By 2030, expand infrastructure and upgrade technology for supplying modern and sustainable energy services for all in developing countries, in particular least developed countries, small island developing States and landlocked developing countries, in accordance with their respective programmes of support.