11 January 2021

Kelly Trout, kelly [at] (EDT)
David Tong, david.tong [at] (NZT)
Romain Ioualalen, romain [at] (CET)

Response: IEA commits to develop a full 1.5°C-aligned net zero scenario

Today, the International Energy Agency (IEA) announced it would publish on 18 May a Special Report outlining a “comprehensive road map” to achieve net zero emissions in the energy sector by 2050 and put global emissions on a path compatible with limiting global warming to 1.5°C. This announcement comes after the IEA has faced years of pressure from members of the #FixTheWEO campaign, including Oil Change International, to align its scenarios with the 1.5°C objective under the Paris Agreement.

Kelly Trout, Interim Director of the Energy Transitions and Futures Program at Oil Change International, said:

“The IEA is finally taking a major step towards living up to its ambition to lead the clean energy transition. Developing a fully-fledged 1.5°C scenario is a long overdue and urgent first step towards providing governments with the right tools to meet the Paris Agreement goals. The real test of how serious Fatih Birol and the IEA are about tackling the climate emergency will be if this new scenario becomes the cornerstone of all the agency’s work, and in particular its influential World Energy Outlook this fall. We’ll be looking for a robust 1.5°C scenario that prioritizes a rapid and just phase-out out of fossil fuels, rather than gambling our future on risky negative emissions technologies.”


Romain Ioualalen, Senior Campaigner at Oil Change International, said:

“After years of pressure from civil society and investors, the IEA finally seems to acknowledge that its responsibility is to help governments meet their climate goals and not to defend the interests of the fossil fuels industry. We know how important the IEA’s scenarios are in energy planning; just last week, ExxonMobil used low-ambition IEA scenarios to justify continued oil and gas production for decades to come. If the IEA wants to positively influence governments’ decisions ahead of COP26, it needs to ensure that all of its tools are geared towards the same objective: a rapid phase-out of fossil fuels in line with the 1.5°C limit.”



Fore more information, see:

  1. The #FixTheWEO campaign website:
  2. OCI’s reaction to the IEA’s 2020 WEO:
  3. Joint letter to Fatih Birol (May 2020):
  4. New study out from Global Witness and Friends of the Earth Scotland on the danger of relying on fossil fuel-based Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) to meet global climate objectives: