Renewable energy grew surpassing fossil fuels in 2014 and recorded an additional 135 gigawatts to power sector’s capacity, said Renewables 2015 Global Status Report released by REN21 on June 18. The additional wattage came from hydropower, solar, wind and other natural resources.
The report indicated that with the latest figure, the electricity sector effected more than the capacity of the United States’ entire nuclear reactors and modestly less than those installed in Germany from all sources.
Surprisingly, the report disclosed that China emerged as a leader in the international community in utilizing clean energy. Previously however, China was known to be on the top list of countries that rely much on coal.
While the latest report revealed that overall, of the world’s power-generating capacity, only 28 percent of it accounted for renewables, a figure that is very meager when one has to factor in the impact of regular heating and cooling as well as fueling mobiles and other fuel-powered machines.
Executive Secretary Christine Lins of REN21 said however that the portion of renewable in electricity sector will have a continued growth which is already visible among emerging economies. Lins cautioned nonetheless that more attention is needed on the transportation and heating-cooling sectors.
Simultaneously too, the report recommended that in lieu of the increase in using renewables, a reduction in “heat-trapping carbon emissions” must be achieved and such goal must lead to their ultimate eradication at the century’s end.
At the present, the share of renewable energy sources in all energy-consuming sectors is pegged at 10 percent and for what the Group of Seven, headed by United States President Barack Obama, envisioned to reduce the climate change impact, said share must dramatically increase.
An issue at stake is the developing economies which come with population expansion. Experts from fossil fuel and energy sectors said development cannot happen sans the fossil fuels, especially in power sector where the favored fuel remains to still be coal.
Benjamin Sporton from World Coal Association commented that while renewables grow, coal is not going away.
The International Energy Agency said that investing in renewables must increase to $4000 billion by 2030 (from $270 billion in 2014) to back the “transition to a low-carbon economy,” news said.