Today at COP23, the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) announced a major expansion of its below50 project, designed to rapidly grow the market for the world’s most sustainable fuels.
As part of this expansion, new hubs will begin operating across three continents: Australia, North America and South America.
below50 is a unique collaboration that involves the entire value-chain for low-carbon fuels. It brings forward-thinking businesses together to purchase, consume or produce fuels that emit at least 50% fewer greenhouse gasses (GHGs) than traditional fossil fuels. This is a hugely important step forward in the transition to low-carbon transport.
Transport accounts for nearly 25% of all emissions worldwide, and 90% of the sector is dependent on carbon intensive fossil-fuels. To date, only 3% of transportation fuels are low-carbon. This figure must grow to 10% by 2030 in order to satisfy economic growth and help keep global temperatures from rising more than 2°C. The new below50 hubs will help in reaching these goals.
By tailoring below50 activities to match local economic, political and geographical contexts – each regional hub is expected to have significant impact on the low-carbon fuels market.
”A unique opportunity to rapidly scale-up the production, use and export of below50 fuels.”
Larissa Rose, Managing Director of the Queensland Renewable Fuels Association
Speaking at the launch in Bonn, Larissa Rose, Managing Director of the Queensland Renewable Fuels Association (QRFA), host of the below50 hub in Australia, described below50 Australia as “a unique opportunity to rapidly scale-up the production, use and export of below50 fuels.”
Rose underlined the value of a connected global approach commenting that “establishing the regional below50 hubs today sends a strong signal that builds confidence, demonstrating the rise of a low-carbon fuels industry that is essential for reducing emissions in the transport sector.”
The launch of these hubs is just the beginning of below50’s ongoing expansion. In 2018, the project is looking to establish more regional hubs - most likely in China, Mexico and the Philippines.
This strong momentum reflects the growth of the low-carbon fuels sector as well as the growing recognition of the role that low-carbon fuels will play in reducing emissions in transport.
The below50 hubs will develop their own work programmes but will remain strongly connected to the global below50 programme and will align with the broader vision and direction of the project.