2023 was a good year, as far as renewable energy production is concerned. According to a new report from the International Energy Agency, renewable energy capacity added to energy systems worldwide increased by 50% in 2023, reaching nearly 510 gigawatts ( GW). And unsurprisingly, this addition is largely attributed to photovoltaic solar, whose share was three-quarters. The report also indicates that the greatest growth was observed in China. However, record increases were also seen in Europe, the United States, and Brazil.
Three times more renewable energy in 2030?
The IEA regularly publishes data on the energy transition. But this report is particularly important, since it is the first analysis of trends after COP 28 in Dubai in December. And the good news is that the data shows that the goals set at this conference are completely achievable. Indeed, taking into account existing policies and market conditions, it is estimated that global renewable energy production capacity is expected to reach 7,300 gigawatts by 2028. 95% of this expansion would be attributed to photovoltaic solar. And moreover, renewable energies would become the main source of electricity in the world from the beginning of 2025.
Nevertheless, the agency warns that, despite these good prospects, efforts are still needed to achieve the objectives of COP 28. “The new IEA report shows that, within the framework of policies and conditions of current market, global renewable energy capacity is already on track to increase by two and a half times by 2030. This is still not enough to reach the target of COP 28 to triple renewable energy, but we are getting closer – and governments have the tools to close the gap,” explains Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the IEA.
Different efforts depending on the country
The IEA also underlines the fact that depending on the country, the efforts to be mobilized are different to achieve the objectives of COP 28. For developed countries and the most advanced emerging countries, the agency mentions obstacles such as uncertainty policy, the adaptation of existing infrastructure or even administrative barriers. For other emerging and developing countries, the IEA rather mentions financing problems. The agency also recommends the establishment of good governance and a regulatory framework that reduces risks for investors.
“For me, the most important challenge for the international community is to rapidly increase financing and deployment of renewable energy in most emerging and developing economies, many of which are being left behind in the new energy economy. The success of the tripling objective will depend on this”, declared Fatih Birol on this subject.
Solar power put forward
In any case, the installation of new production capacities is becoming more and more interesting, from an economic point of view, for photovoltaic solar energy. The IEA estimates that the price of modules has fallen by almost 50% in 2023. And the production capacity of these modules should exceed demand in 2024. On the other hand, for wind turbines, things are more complicated, outside of China, due to supply problems, but also administrative barriers.
- The objective set at COP 28 is to triple the production of renewable energies by 2030
- According to an IEA report, which is based on 2023 data and current market conditions, we are on track to achieve this goal
- But additional efforts are still required, particularly with regard to financing production capacities in emerging and developing countries
- The report is particularly optimistic for the production of photovoltaic modules in the world, whose prices are falling
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