The Energy Transition and the Extractives Sector

7. Guidance and technical assistance for policy makers

There are a number of technical assistance providers and open access resources available on the energy transition. This topic overview already highlighted many initiatives above.

Additional resources available include the Energy Transition Outlook of DNV GL, which provides insight into the infrastructure requirements of the energy transition and reveal demand projections. The 2018 Outlook, for example, projects that there will continue to be significant investments in the oil and gas sector leading up to the mid-century, with natural gas rapidly overtaking oil to become the world’s primary energy source in 2026. This means there will be continued need for new pipelines joining additional gas fields to existing gas grids, and that some large trunk pipelines connecting regions will be built.

Further, the Just Transition Research Collaborative's online forum Just Transition(s) to a Low-Carbon World points out that renewable energy installations should not be automatically regarded as safer and cleaner. There are significant occupational health and safety risks with production of solar panels or wind turbines, as well as their maintenance at substantial heights. Large scale renewable energy infrastructure may also involve the displacement of communities. Hence, it is important to employ policies and regulations to manage and mitigate any social and ecological implications of production, installation, and maintenance of renewable energy technologies.

It is important to ensure that oil and gas sector adheres to the highest standards available to reduce leakages of methane in their operations. The Oil and gas methane partnership – a Public, Private Partnership covering approximately 20 countries and a number of partners, and including some developing country oil companies (e.g. from Mexico) provides a protocol for methane leakage reduction. The partnership provides Technical Assistance to the NOCs of developing countries to help them define protocols for surveying and fixing methane leakages.

This database on the Climate Change Laws of the World covers climate and climate-related laws in 177 countries, including details of laws and policies promoting the transition to low carbon energy, transport and land use, and covering climate resilience. The database also features climate litigation cases from 25 countries. Another such regulatory database is the Renewable Energy Law and Policy Database’s renewable energy policy and regulation review. The database outlines policy frameworks, regulatory institutions and mechanisms relevant to renewable energy and energy efficiency for more than 160 countries and was last updated in 2014. The country reviews of China and India includes overall policy and information for each province (in China) and each state (in India). The initiative contributes to the vision of sharing experience and knowledge in energy efficiency and renewable energy and provides an important tool for energy regulators and the wider public.

The Clean Energy Solutions Centre operated by the National Renewable Energy Lab provides Technical Assistance to governments on clean energy and has operated for about five years, with about 200 requests. It provides policy advice, and helps with feasibility studies, environmental Impact Assessments and similar initiatives. Similarly, the Climate Technology Centre and Network operated by UNEP and UNIDO, and funded by the UNFCC with various partners, provides Technical Assistance both to governments and non-state actors. It operates across all 160 developing countries. Requests are funnelled via National Designated Entities (NDEs) in each country – usually in the Environment Ministries. 

Please also view the topic library and guides associated with this topic for further information and resources.