Tracking SDG 7: The Energy Progress Report (2020)


May 2020

This joint tracking report monitors and assesses global progress in the quest for sustainable, affordable, reliable and modern energy services for everyone. Published annually by the custodian agencies of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7 on energy, the report serves to guide international co-operation and policy-making to achieve universal, sustainable energy access by 2030.

The annual SDG 7 tracking report includes the official dashboard of global, regional and national progress on four key energy targets:

  • 7.1: Ensuring universal access to electricity and clean cooking solutions;
  • 7.2: Substantially increasing the share of renewable energy;
  • 7.3: Doubling progress on energy efficiency;
  • 7.A: Increasing international collaboration in support of clean and renewable energy.

The world has made promising progress towards ensuring universal access to sustainable energy over the last decade. The number of people without access to electricity fell from 1.2 billion globally in 2010 to 789 million in 2018. Renewable energy solutions have been instrumental, with more than 136 million people receiving basic electricity services via off-grid renewables by 2018. Still, unless efforts are stepped up significantly, an estimated 620 million people would remain without access to electricity in 2030 – a number that could become even higher with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The ability of countries to invest in sustainable energy access varies widely. Enhanced co-operation is vital to support those most in need – especially amid the COVID-19 crisis. The 2020 edition introduces tracking for a new indicator, 7.A.1, on international financial flows to developing countries in support of clean and renewable energy. Total international public flows reached USD 21.4 billion in 2017, double the level in 2010. Yet only 12% of such financial flows reached the least-developed countries, which could face the greatest challenges in achieving SDG targets.

 

SDG& infographic

Along with tracking SDG 7, the report identifies the best practices, policies, measures and scenarios to accelerate further progress, simultaneously pursue other SDGs, and ensure broad socio-economic development in line with a resilient recovery. With holistic approaches, targeted policies and international support, substantial gains could be made to improve the lives of millions of people.

IRENA produces the report jointly with the International Energy Agency (IEA), the United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD), the World Bank, and the World Health Organization (WHO). The preparatory process for the 2020 edition was chaired by IRENA.

Find the dashboards and additional information on the Tracking SDG 7 website.