If the world is to transition to a climate-compatible future, much will turn on new innovations in clean energy and whether they can be deployed at a large scale. This is especially critical for emerging economies, which are developing their infrastructure and undergoing economic growth and urbanisation at an unprecedented scale and pace, yet still often lack the support for technological innovation found in wealthier countries.
Six of these emerging economies – Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Mexico and South Africa – contributed more than 40% of the global CO₂ emissions in 2019. That’s 1.5 times the combined emissions from the US and Europe. Yet at the same time China, India, and Brazil were the first, fourth and sixth largest producers of renewable electricity. These three countries – the largest emerging economies – are now at a crucial juncture, faced with immense potential to become major innovators in the development of clean energy technology.
In a new paper we explored how fast-growing countries can not only develop their own sustainable systems but provide a source of learning and knowledge to influence global trends. We did this by investigating specific clean energy success stories in the three countries.
‘A story about the need and promise of bigger scale transition to renewables. We all must do our part but wouldn’t it be great if we knew that large players were in on the movement too! Gives us hope!’ Nuable