World leaders are meeting in Lima, Peru this week to discuss the new international climate agreement that is due in Paris next year.
Christiana Figueres, executive secretary to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, responded to questions from journalists on Monday regarding falling oil prices, renewable energy and responsible investment.
One of the main strengths of renewable energy, she said, is the predictability of price. First, countries need only make an initial investment to install renewable energy technologies. After that, the price is predictable and not subject to supply and demand, she said. Another bonus for renewable energy is that its prices should never and would never be subject to negotiations between countries, she said.
More countries will soon realize that clean energy is in their long-term interests, said Figueres. But the path forward is not clear. Deciding how much responsibility certain countries should take is "more an art than a science,” she said. In the absence of "environmental police," the energy transition will be a gradual process that is left up to the will of governments and their citizens, she added.
When it comes to investment, Figueres said she had no doubt that capital will flow toward renewable technologies once governments reaffirm their commitments to meeting the two degree Celsius goal to avoid catastrophic climate change.
“From a financial and business perspective, [we have] a stronger case every day for renewables and a weaker case…for fossil fuels,” she said. Governing boards of companies are realizing that they cannot incur the risk of stranded assets and that they need to think about the long-term viability of their investments, she added.
The video below provides many more statements by Figueres regarding the slow but certain path toward a green future.