After the Conference of the Parties (COP) 21 and the Paris Agreement, the world has reached a new pinnacle in climate change cooperation. Under this climate accord, the international agenda is seeking to limit global warming beyond 2º Celsius, equivalent to pre-industrial levels, by the end of the 21st century. Nevertheless, there is an imminent risk that, as with its antecedent, the Kyoto Protocol, the parties will not able to translate pledges into real sustainable development policy actions capable of effecting change within the necessary time frame. This situation has limited the margin of error for policy-makers and energy professionals, as there is no further room for inaction. The international energy organisations have underscored that the envisaged transformation within the energy sector is failing severely, particularly regarding the limited efforts of current sustainability measures. This policy paper maintains that one of the main reasons why prevailing interventions are ineffectively addressing global warming is that they neglect the limitations of consumer’s rationality. Thus, they fail to harness the rules-of-thumb exhibited by humans in consumption decision-making scenarios under uncertainty. The paper elaborates how incorporating behavioural economics can substantially improve energy policies under the Sustainable Development Goals, compared to the limited results achieved so far.
How to Cite:
Narváez, E.R., 2019. Budging our way towards sustainable policies: A lesson for the energy sector. The Public Sphere: Journal of Public Policy, 7(1), pp.15–38.