Goal 7: Affordable and clean energy

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.

Efforts to encourage clean energy has resulted in more than 20 percent of global power being generated by renewable sources as of 2011. Still one in seven 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.  

Facts and figures

1.7 billion

Between 1990 and 2010, the number of people with access to electricity increased by 1.7 billion.

1 in 7

One in seven people still lacks access to electricity; most of them live in rural areas of the developing world.

60%

Energy is the dominant contributor to climate change, accounting for around 60 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions.

14%

Adopting stronger efficiency standards could reduce global electricity consumption by buildings and industry by 14 percent.

3 billion

More than 40 percent of the world’s population, 3 billion people, rely on polluting and unhealthy fuels for cooking.

20%

Globally, as of 2011, more than 20 percent of power is generated through renewable sources.

  • By 2030, ensure universal access to affordable, reliable and modern energy services

  • By 2030, increase substantially the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix

  • By 2030, double the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency

  • 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

  • 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 land-locked developing countries, in accordance with their respective programmes of support
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Goals in action
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