The role of fossil energy in a sustainable energy future, ensuring alignment with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

Energy is the golden thread that weaves throughout the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and is at the core of meeting the world’s quality of life aspirations. The challenge is reconciling a tight emissions pathway with these aspirations. The 2030 Agenda represents an imperative for profound and immediate changes in how energy is produced, transformed, traded, and consumed as the energy sector accounts for 60% of total global greenhouse gas emissions. If the world is to develop sustainably, it will be necessary to ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy services while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and the carbon footprint of the energy sector.

This briefing seeks to discuss the following within the context of the 2030 Agenda:

  • Recommendations on Carbon Capture Use and Storage
  • Is financing investment in fossil energy consistent with the 2030 Agenda?
  • Deep Transformation of the Energy System
  • Sustainable Resource Management


Scott Foster

Director, Sustainable Energy Division
United Nations Economic Commission for Europe