Today marks the beginning of Japan’s G20 presidency

01 Dec 2018

Paris, France, 1 December 2018 – Japan begins its year- long presidency of the G20 today. This is the first time the country hosts the annual gathering of G20 leaders. The Japanese government will provide leadership in advancing discussions on the myriad issues facing the international community, including the transition to innovative, flexible, transparent and cleaner energy systems.

One of the G20’s principal work streams in 2019 will focus on sustainable energy. Energy efficiency will feature prominently on the agenda, as will the continued implementation of the G20 Energy Efficiency Leading Programme (EELP), which was adopted in 2016 as the forum’s first long-term plan for international cooperation on energy efficiency. There are ten sectoral work streams under the EELP that progress energy efficiency improvement in priority areas, including buildings, industry, transport, appliances and finance.

In 2018 under the Argentine G20 Presidency, G20 Energy Ministers recognised that “[i]international collaboration, including through the G20, is critical to effectively support the design and implementation of national energy efficiency policies and programmes” in their joint Communiqué. They called for a significant “scale up [of] public and private investments and financing in energy efficiency across all sectors to help achieve the energy transitions” and highlighted the potential for behaviour change initiatives to act as “a bridge between innovation, technological progress, and nationally driven energy efficiency measures, [and to deliver] greater benefits for consumers and all sectors of the economy.”

Mr. Benoit Lebot, Executive Director of IPEEC, welcomed Japan’s G20 leadership and its focus on energy efficiency as well as innovation – a key priority for the new Presidency. “We look forward to working with the Japanese Presidency and to continue supporting the G20’s collaborative activities on energy efficiency,” he said. “To meet the Paris Agreement and the UN Sustainable Development Goals, countries need to scale up efforts on energy efficiency, especially the world’s twenty major economies. Through the leadership of the G20, there is a strong framework for international cooperation. Energy efficiency is for everyone, and we must act in concert to realize its full potential. In this context, innovation is also essential.” IPEEC acts as the coordinating organisation for the EELP and has been facilitating the implementation of the G20’s collaborative energy efficiency activities since 2014.

Energy efficiency is a key priority for Japan domestically. They have recently approved their Strategic Energy Plan that forms the basis of Japan's new energy policy towards 2030 and further towards 2050. The plan promotes energy efficiency and conservation, introduction of renewable energy, and introduction of efficient thermal power plants.

The first G20 energy event next year will be a meeting of the G20 Energy Transitions Working Group, which will gather energy policymakers from member economies to discuss issues related to sustainable energy, including energy efficiency. A ministerial meeting on Energy Transitions and Global Environment for Sustainable Growth will be hosted in June 2019 in Karuizawa, Japan.

To find out more on G20 Japan 2019, please access here.

More information on IPEEC’s G20 activities here.

IPEEC, established in 2009 at the Group of 8 (G8) Summit in L’Aquila, Italy, is an autonomous international forum that aims to provide global leadership in energy efficiency by identifying and facilitating the implementation of public policies and programmes in this area. The IPEEC Secretariat is hosted at the International Energy Agency (IEA) in Paris.