Enhancing energy efficiency may be one of the most promising, and most immediate, ways of cutting greenhouse gas emissions. Wasted energy contributes to global warming and higher energy costs. Squeezing the most out of energy resources can save money and have a major impact on the fight against climate change. Promoting the use of low energy light bulbs, and setting tougher standards for cars, factories, power plants, and building heating systems are some of the ways energy efficiency can be improved.
Energy efficiency in industry is improving in major industrialized and developing countries. While there was a decline in global energy intensity of more than 28 per cent during the past decade, global investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy reached a record $100 billion in 2006. A wide variety of energy efficiency policies and programmes have been implemented in many countries to increase productivity while reducing energy consumption.
Nonetheless, energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies face a number of barriers in the marketplace, such as lack of public awareness and lack of viable financing models. DESA has also been active in technical cooperation projects intended to promote more energy efficient refrigerators in China, as well as market transformation through appliance standards and labelling in India.