November 16, 2016

Contact: Greg Muttitt, +212 630 251 030, (in Morocco at COP 22)

International Energy Agency “neglects Paris Agreement” with new World Energy Outlook – World needs better odds than a coin toss of avoiding dangerous climate change

Oil Change International today criticised the International Energy Agency’s (IEA’s) World Energy Outlook for failing to take into account the climate goals agreed by 195 governments in Paris last year.

Greg Muttitt, Senior Advisor at Oil Change International, said:

“The International Energy Agency has failed to reflect the Paris Agreement in its new World Energy Outlook. It continues to present its obsolete 450 Scenario as the default climate scenario, which gives only a coin-toss chance of staying below 2ºC. The world needs better odds of avoiding dangerous climate change.

“Governments and companies should be highly cautious about using the 450 Scenario to reflect climate ambition. To regain relevance to energy decisions, the IEA must model the Paris goal of 1.5ºC and drop its outdated 450 Scenario.”

Notes for editors:

  • The World Energy Outlook usually includes three forecasts of the future: with no action on climate change (Current Policies Scenario), with existing pledges (New Policies Scenario), and aiming for a 50% chance of staying below 2C (450 Scenario).
  • The 450 Scenario was introduced around the time of the Copenhagen climate meeting in 2009, when 2ºC was the consensus world climate target. Scientists now see a 2ºC increase as the absolute limit beyond which serious dangers occur; the Paris Agreement has a goal of keeping warming well below 2ºC, and aiming to limit it to 1.5ºC.
  • The new World Energy Outlook does briefly refer to scenarios for achieving 1.5ºC, or for a 2-in-3 chance of staying below 2ºC. However these do not appear in its data tables and analysis.
  • Oil Change International is a research and advocacy organisation that aims to facilitate the transition from fossil fuels to clean energy. For more information on Oil Change International, see