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Renewable energy installations exceed fossil fuels in landmark year – 26th October


2015 has been hailed as a landmark year, as renewable energy installations accounted for more than half of new electricity capacity for the first time. The IEA (International Energy Agency) has marked the significance by predicting that renewable capacity will grow by 42% by 2021 and within five years renewable energy is anticipated to generate more than the consumption of the US and EU combined.

Coal capacity has been surpassed by total renewable capacity which has been helped in part by the 500,000 solar panels which were installed on a daily basis last year. The IEA’s executive director claims that “we are witnessing a transformation of global power”, and has led to revised estimations that by 2060, 60% of global power capacity will come from renewables. Such optimistic estimations are the result of key policy shifts in 2016, including the Paris climate agreement and improved climate policies from fast developing economies such as Mexico and India.

The IEA note the expansion of renewable energy in China as a significant contributor to the number of renewable installations worldwide, as the equivalent of 2 wind turbines every hour were erected in China in 2015.

Despite the optimism for the future of renewables, the IEA state that there still remains a “huge untapped potential of renewables” and that traditional fuels still produce the majority of electricity generation, with coal power supplying nearly 39% of global energy. The IEA have called for policy uncertainty in many countries to be rectified to improve investment and further encourage renewable energy installations.

To find out more from The Independent, click here.

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