IEA: Global renewable energy generation to reach 26% by 2020

Renewable energy will represent the largest single source of electricity growth over the next five years, driven by falling costs and aggressive expansion in emerging economies, International Energy Agency’s (IEA) latest report says.

IEA’s ‘Medium-Term Renewable Energy Market Report 2015’ sees the share of renewable energy in global power generation rising to over 26% by 2020 from 22% in 2013.

By 2020, the amount of global electricity generation coming from renewable energy will be higher than today’s combined electricity demand of China, India and Brazil, IEA’s press release reads. The report says the geography of deployment will increasingly shift to emerging economies and developing countries, which will make up two-thirds of the renewable electricity expansion to 2020.

Fatih Birol, IEA Executive Director, said: “Renewables are poised to seize the crucial top spot in global power supply growth, but this is hardly time for complacency. Governments must remove the question marks over renewables if these technologies are to achieve their full potential, and put our energy system on a more secure, sustainable path.”

According to IEA, renewable electricity additions over the next five years will top 700 GW, accounting or almost two-thirds of net additions to global power capacity.

The report also highlights finance as key to achieving sustained investment, stating that regulatory barriers, grid constraints, and macroeconomic conditions pose challenges in many emerging economies.

The report includes an accelerated case that assesses the impacts of enhanced policy frameworks in key countries, finding that this could boost global cumulative renewable power growth by 25% above the main case, with rising annual installations.

IEA is an autonomous organisation that facilitates the global energy dialogue, providing research, statistics and recommendations.

Image: IEA