‘Exceptional new normal’: IEA raises growth forecast for wind and solar by another 25%

Wind and solar are now expected to exceed even the “faster case” detailed by the firm in November 2020 (dashed dark blue), in which they matched worldwide gas capability by 2022.

At the time, the company had actually anticipated eco-friendly additions to be badly hit by the unfolding Covid-19 pandemic, however effect on the sector were mainly restricted to the first quarter of the year.

Raising renewables

Last years flagship IEA World Energy Outlook made a major update to the agencys presumptions about the costs of funding the building and construction of wind and solar over the next two decades. This gave a substantial increase to the agencys expectations for the development of renewables.

Raise, repeat

Gigawatts of solar capability added worldwide each year (red line) and the IEA renewable market update 2021 (red triangles), as well as IEA World Energy Outlooks released in between 2009-2020. Source: Carbon Brief analysis of IEA reports. Chart by Carbon Brief using Highcharts.

Describing its brand-new forecasts, the IEA indicate a variety of modifications over the past year, as well as areas where its earlier expectations have actually proved too cynical.

This is based on comparing the brand-new forecast for development in 2021 (red line in the chart below) to the “main case” released in November 2020 (rushed mid blue). Taking a look at the figures for 2022, the IEAs brand-new forecast is 30% greater than the primary one it published last November.

The new forecast for 2021 is almost 40% greater than the one published by the IEA simply a year ago, in May 2020 (dashed light blue line).

The Paris-based agency says a “substantial” 280 gigawatts (GW) of eco-friendly capability — mostly wind and solar — was installed worldwide in 2015, some 45% greater than the level in 2019, after the biggest annual increase in more than 20 years.

Overall, the IEA says that renewables represented 90% of brand-new electrical power generating capability added globally in 2015 which they will fulfill the very same share in each of the next two years.

In its most current upgrade, the IEA says wind and solar growth projections have been “revised upwards by over 25% from in 2015”.

The IEA has consistently raised its expectations for wind and solar over the previous years, drawing fire from critics that say– in the words of a 2019 Reuters post– that it has “underplay [ed] the speed at which the world could change renewable sources of energy”.

But todays new report, which concentrates on near-term growth in 2021 and 2022, includes even greater forecasts for wind and solar development.

This “remarkable” level of annual additions will become the “brand-new regular” in 2021 and 2022, the IEA says, with the capacity for more acceleration in the years that follow.

The IEAs “renewable energy market update” forecasts almost 40% greater development in 2021 than it anticipated a year ago, putting wind and solar on track to match global gas capability by 2022.

This is revealed for solar in the chart below, with red triangles marking the solar development figures in todays report, the red line revealing historic data and the blue and black lines showing succeeding World Energy Outlooks for solar over the next 20 years, as published between 2009-2020.

Real development is shown in black, while different IEA projections are revealed in red and tones of blue. Source: Carbon Brief analysis of IEA projections.

The International Energy Company (IEA) has raised its forecast for the global growth of wind and solar by another 25% compared to figures it published just six months ago.

The greatest changes in this years forecast are for China, the IEA notes, where more jobs are proceeding without federal government subsidies than expected. The upgrade says:

The IEA states there were “record-breaking” competitive auctions for eco-friendly agreements last year, with India and China protecting nearly 55GW of new capability at typical prices of $60 per megawatt hour (MWh) for wind and $47/MWh for solar.

Wind and solar growth throughout 2021 and 2022, according to the IEAs November 2020 projection (green) and its May 2021 figures (blue). Source: IEA Renewable Energy Market Update 2021.

The forecast does not yet include the Biden administrations new emissions reduction targets or its infrastructure bill, which the IEA states would enhance sustainable growth after 2022, if enacted.

It also indicates better-than-expected solar auction volumes in India during 2020, but includes that the continuous Covid-19 rise in the country creates “short-term uncertainty”.

The brand-new China forecast for 2021 and 2022 is lower than the development seen in 2020, when developers rushed to secure subsidies prior to they ended, but the IEA now sees less of a downturn than it had actually previously anticipated.

There was another record-breaking year for corporate sustainable energy offers, the IEA includes, with business signing “power purchase agreements” for nearly 25GW in 2020 — a 25% boost.

” The pipeline of solar PV and wind plant projects accepting provincial electrical power prices without extra aids has actually increased because last year, resulting in a more positive projection.”

The IEA has, for that reason, increased its projection for development in China by 45%, enhancing total additions in 2021 and 2022 from around 150GW to around 230GW, as shown in the chart below.

Somewhere else, the IEA has actually boosted its US projections by more than 20% thanks to the expected extension of renewable resource tax credits.

In a press release announcing the brand-new figures, IEA primary executive Fatih Birol says:

The update says renewables will once again fulfill 90% of the international power sectors capability development in 2021 and 2022.

” Wind and solar energy are offering us more factors to be optimistic about our climate goals as they exceed after record. In 2015 the boost in eco-friendly capability represented 90% of the entire worldwide power sectors growth … A huge growth of tidy electrical energy is vital to providing the world a chance of accomplishing its net-zero objectives.”

Sharelines from this story

Real development is revealed in black, while numerous IEA projections are shown in red and shades of blue. Source: Carbon Brief analysis of IEA projections. Gigawatts of solar capability added around the world each year (red line) and the IEA renewable market update 2021 (red triangles), as well as IEA World Energy Outlooks published in between 2009-2020. Wind and solar development throughout 2021 and 2022, according to the IEAs November 2020 forecast (green) and its May 2021 figures (blue). Source: IEA Renewable Energy Market Update 2021.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *