EPO: EPO-IEA study highlights need to accelerate innovation in clean energy technologies to meet climate goals

Munich, 27 April 2021

EPO-IEA study highlights need to accelerate innovation in clean energy technologies to meet climate goals

  • Global patent data shows innovation in the past decade has been increasing faster in low-carbon energy technologies than in fossil fuels
  • Average annual growth rate of clean energy inventions in the past decade has slowed compared with 2000-13 level
  • Innovation is shifting from renewable energy supply to end-use and cross-cutting technologies such as batteries, hydrogen, smart grids and carbon capture
  • Clean energy technologies in end-use sectors such as transport, buildings and industry now account for majority (60%) of all low-carbon energy inventions
  • Cross-cutting technologies showed strongest patent growth since 2017
  • The rise in patents related to electric vehicles is a key driver of clean energy innovation
  • Europe leads overall with a 28% share of global low-carbon energy patents in past decade, followed by Japan (25%), US (20%), South Korea (10%) and China (8%)
  • IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol: “Around half the emissions reductions to get to net zero by 2050 may need to come from technologies that are not yet on the market."
  • EPO President António Campinos: “This report is a clear call for action to step up research and innovation into new low-carbon energy technologies, and improve existing ones."
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Latest update 27.04.2021