Cost cut, sustainable policy boost growth in renewable power sector

Says IEA report

Md Ashiquer Rahman Bhuiyan

11 November, 2020 12:00 AM printer

Cost cut, sustainable policy boost growth in renewable power sector

Cost reductions in technology and sustainable policy supports are driving strong growth in renewable power technologies across the world, said a report of International Energy Agency (IEA).

The insight came out through a report styled: “IEA’s Renewables 2020 report” published on Tuesday.

According to the report, wind and solar photovoltaic (PV) panels are on course to become the top source of electricity in a few years, first surpassing natural gas and then coal.

"Driven by China and the United States, new addition of renewable power capacity worldwide will increase to a record level of almost 200GW this year," the report forecasts.

Under favourable policy conditions, solar PV annual additions could reach a record level of 150GW by 2022 – an increase of almost 40 percent in just three years.

Albeit the positive prediction of IEA regarding renewable energy, Chairman of Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (SREDA) said: “At present, we are producing renewable energy with land constraints, insufficient wind resources, and moderate solar power compared to Rajasthan, India.

“Therefore, we are looking for alternative options--- installing solar panels on the rooftop, and expand in the informal and off-shore wind with the view to accomplishing sustainable renewable energy,” he added. 

India is expected to be the largest contributor to the renewables upswing in 2021, with the country’s annual additions doubling from 2020.

This rise represents almost 90 percent of the total expansion in overall power capacity globally led by wind, hydropower, and solar PV.

Wind and solar additions are set to jump by 30 percent in both the United States and China as developers rush to taking advantage of expiring incentives.

However, policymakers still need to take steps to support the strong momentum behind renewables, the report suggests. 

But if countries address these policy uncertainties in time, the report estimates that global solar PV and wind additions could increase by a further 25 percent in 2022.

IEA Executive Director Dr Fatih Birol said, “In 2025, renewables are set to become the largest source of electricity generation worldwide, ending coal’s five decades as the top power provider.”

“By that time, renewables are expected to supply one-third of the world’s electricity – and their total capacity will be twice the size of the entire power capacity of China today,” said the IEA Executive Director.

  “Governments can tackle these issues to help bring about a sustainable recovery and accelerate clean energy transitions,” he added. The electricity generated by renewable technologies will increase by 7 percent globally in 2020, underpinned by the record new capacity additions, the report estimates.

The demand for bioenergy in the industry is also falling due to the wider drop in economic activity.