Renewables to grow by 1 TW by 2022 - IEA

Oct 05, 2017, 00:36
Renewables to grow by 1 TW by 2022 - IEA

A report released by International Energy Agency (IEA) says India, China and the US will account for two thirds of global renewable expansion to 2022.

Historically, the IEA has significantly underestimated growth in renewables, notably solar PV and its newly renamed report "Renewables 2017" (formerly titled Medium-Term Renewable Energy Market Report) is an attempt to redress fundamental failings over the last decade of forecasts.

The IEA has raised its forecast for renewables compared with a year ago, largely as a result of more solar in China and India, with China already exceeding its 2020 target for new solar power.

Surging solar installations in China and other markets helped the world add almost 165 GW of renewables in 2016, nearly two-thirds of net new power capacity.

In 2016, for the first time in history, solar energy grew faster than any other source of energy.

"We see renewables growing by about 1,000 gw by 2022, which equals about half of the current global capacity in coal power, which took 80 years to build", executive director Birol said.

It said solar will account for the largest annual capacity additions for renewables over the next five years, above both wind and hydro. The world is collectively expected to grow renewable electricity capacity by 43 per cent between 2017 and 2022. Along with India and the USA, the three will be responsible for two-thirds of renewables expansion by 2022.

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The IEA put much of the solar surge down to a large reduction in the cost of deployment and increased support from governments.

By 2022, the amount of solar that has been installed globally will exceed the combined total electricity capacity of India and Japan today.

"What we are witnessing is the birth of a new era in solar PV [systems]", he said in a statement.

The IEA report comes as Ottawa aims to drastically cut carbon emissions, largely by expanding renewable energy capacity.

The US is the second largest market for renewables, but there is uncertainty in the future over federal tax reforms, worldwide trade and energy policy, the report said.

The influential Paris-based agency said its recent outlook for Canadian renewables was "less optimistic" than its 2016 projection due to "recent changes in auctions schemes in Ontario and Quebec".

"The star is really becoming solar PV, which becomes the leader in renewable growth", said Frankl. But even considering the explosive growth of solar and wind, coal will remain the largest source of electricity under the current scenario.

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