CleanTechnica is the #1 cleantech-focused
website
 in the world. Subscribe today!


Biofuels Image Credit: Solar panel, wind turbine & globe via Shutterstock

Published on June 5th, 2014 | by Guest Contributor

11

Renewable Sources Provide Over 20% Of Global Power Production

Share on Google+Share on RedditShare on StumbleUponTweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on FacebookPin on PinterestDigg thisShare on TumblrBuffer this pageEmail this to someone

June 5th, 2014 by
 

Originally published on Energy Post.
By Karel Beckman

Global renewable electricity energy capacity rose to a new record level last year — more than 1,560 gigawatts (GW), up 8% from 2012. More than 22 % of the world’s power production now comes from renewable sources. Renewables currently meet almost one-fifth of world final energy consumption.

That is one of the conclusion of the new Renewables Global Status Report published by REN21, “the global renewable energy policy multi-stakeholder network.”

The Renewables Global Status Report relies on up-to-date renewable energy data , provided by an international network of more than 500 contributors, researchers, and authors.

With developing world’s policy support, global renewable energy generation capacity jumped to a record level; 95 emerging economies now nurture renewable energy growth through supportive policies, up six-fold from just 15 countries in 2005.

These 95 developing nations make up the vast majority of the 144 countries with renewable energy support policies and targets in place. The rise of developing world support contrasts with declining support and renewables policy uncertainty and even retroactive support reductions in some European countries and the United States.

In 2013, an estimated 6.5 million people worldwide worked directly or indirectly in the renewable energy sector. Other important developments include:

• Renewable energy provided 19% of global final energy consumption in 2012, and continued to grow in 2013. Of this total share in 2012, modern renewables accounted for 10% with the remaining 9% coming from traditional biomass the share of which is declining.

• Heating and cooling from modern biomass, solar, and geothermal sources account for a small but gradually rising share of final global heat demand, amounting to an estimated 10%.

• Liquid biofuels provide about 2.3% of global transport fuel demand.

• Hydropower rose by 4% to approximately 1,000 GW in 2013, accounting for about one-third of renewable power capacity added during the year. Other renewables collectively grew nearly 17% to an estimated 560 GW.

• The solar PV market had a record year, adding about 39 GW in 2013 for a total of approximately 139 GW. For the first time, more solar PV than wind power capacity was added worldwide, accounting for about one-third of renewable power capacity added during the year. Even as global investment in solar PV declined nearly 22% relative to 2012, new capacity installations increased by more than 32%. China saw spectacular growth, accounting for nearly one third of global capacity added, followed by Japan and the United States.

• More than 35 GW of wind power capacity was added in 2013, totalling just more than 318 GW. However, despite several record years, the market was down nearly 10 GW compared to 2012, reflecting primarily a steep drop in the U.S. market. Offshore wind had a record year, with 1.6 GW added, almost all of it in the EU.

• China, the United States, Brazil, Canada, and Germany remained the top countries for total installed renewable power capacity. China’s new renewable power capacity surpassed new fossil fuel and nuclear capacity for the first time.

• Growing numbers of cities, states, and regions seek to transition to 100% renewable energy in either individual sectors or economy-wide. For example, Djibouti, Scotland, and the small-island state of Tuvalu aim to derive 100% of their electricity from renewable sources by 2020.

• Uruguay, Mauritius, and Costa Rica were among the top countries for investment in new renewable power and fuels relative to annual GDP.

• Global new investment in renewable power and fuels was at least USD 249.4 billion in 2013 down from its record level in 2011.

(Source: REN21)

Keep up to date with all the hottest cleantech news by subscribing to our (free) cleantech newsletter, or keep an eye on sector-specific news by getting our (also free) solar energy newsletter, electric vehicle newsletter, or wind energy newsletter.

Print Friendly

Share on Google+Share on RedditShare on StumbleUponTweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on FacebookPin on PinterestDigg thisShare on TumblrBuffer this pageEmail this to someone

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


About the Author

is many, many people. We publish a number of guest posts from experts in a large variety of fields. This is our contributor account for those special people. :D



  • Drevney

    According to this data the percentage of solar and wind in wind is 2 and 4.5 % respectively.
    If that is correct (And I doubt it) it should have been the headline.
    Hydro is a nice renewable but if large it will not have an exponential growth like the technological based solar and wind power.

    • Bob_Wallace

      I suppose that “Solar and Wind provide 2% and 4.5% of the World’s Power” would have been a good headline.

      If that was what the article was about.

      Wind and solar are the fastest growing and are likely to be the dominate energy sources based on the technology we have today, but other technologies are growing as well.

      It’s all good….

    • Drevney

      I think I got it

      139 GW is the nameplate capacity of solar, it cannot be compared to the nameplate capacity of other sources.

      So even if “22 % of the world’s power production now comes from renewable sources” is Hydro 21.8% out of it? is solar 0.03% ? From this article we cannot tell.

      How much of the production is wind/solar ?
      I read a lot in this site and could not find the answer to this simple question.

      • Bob_Wallace

        The first sentence is about capacity. And, yes, production is less than nameplate capacity for all technologies.

        “Global renewable electricity energy capacity rose to a new record level last year — more than 1,560 gigawatts (GW), up 8% from 2012.”

        The second sentence is about production. The amount of power produced.

        “More than 22 % of the world’s power production now comes from renewable sources.”

        The world uses a lot of hydro and biomass. There are a surprising number of countries that have very high (60% or more) renewable electricity grids. Hydro dominates.

        http://k.lenz.name/LB/?p=6525

        According to Wiki -

        ” in 2010 wind power generated 430 TWh or about 2.5% of worldwide electricity usage,[41] up from 1.5% in 2008 and 0.1% in 1997.[42] Between 2005 and 2010 the average annual growth in new installations was 27.6%.[43] Wind power market penetration is expected to reach 3.35% by 2013.”

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wind_power

        Solar is going to be lower than wind this far in. I wouldn’t be surprised if we’re more than 4% wind/solar globally at the moment.

  • LookingForward

    • China, the United States, Brazil, Canada, and Germany remained the top countries for total installed renewable power capacity.

    The author forgot Japan, atleast for solar Japan should be on that list.

    I also wonder what the top countries/states are, when it comes to amount of renewable production capacity per capita with rooftop solar and residential wind.
    Also you should have added a list of top countries share of renewable production, totally different list, but a lot of countries are starting to surpass the 20% renewable share.

  • spec9

    We can do this people. Keep installing solar PV on rooftops. Keep building wind turbines. Drill for geothermal. Buy electric cars and break free from oil.

  • JamesWimberley

    The metric of “final energy consumption” is a bit misleading and understates the real share of renewables. We should be looking at useful, not final energy – what goes to heat and cool buildings, move people and stuff around, and make things. Fossil fuels lose a huge amount of their energy, at least 60%. If you change from a gasoline car to an electric one powered by solar, you dramatically lower the amount of waste. See the energy flow chart from Lawrence Livermore on this blog (link).

  • JM

    This is Capacity, not production. Wind as a average capacity of 36% of the nameplate (onshore).

    • Ross

      Coal has to be kept running even when there’s no demand.

      • Ronald Brakels

        Well, not really. Coal plants don’t like to shut down, but if they are not making enough money to cover the cost of the coal they are burning (including any carbon price) they will either bank down and burn less coal and produce less electrcity, or go into stand by where they just burn enough coal to keep things hot and keep the pressure up but produce little or no electricity, or shut down. Exactly what they do depends on the characteristics of the coal plant and how long they expect the price of electricity to stay low. Of course not many coal plants are faced with these kind of decisions. Victoria’s evil brown coal plants burn filthy lignite that has no export value and without a carbon price will probably keep burning it even if the wholesale electricity price is a fraction of a cent. Currently, after paying Australia’s carbon price they only receive an average of about 2 cents per kilowatt-hour they produce, but they keep on burning.

    • Bob_Wallace

      What’s your point?

      ” More than 22 % of the world’s power production now comes from renewable sources. Renewables currently meet almost one-fifth of world final energy consumption.”

      Those statements are about production, not nameplate.

Back to Top ↑