Renewables hit 22% in global mix
Growth robust and developing nations driving policy advances, says study
Global growth in the renewables sector is robust with developing countries driving many of the new advances in policy, according to a study.
The Renewable Energy Policy Network for the 21st Century said the world now gets 22% of its energy from renewable sources. The relative pace of renewables growth compared with other power sources also suggests that the upward trend should continue, researchers added.
Last year, renewables accounted for more than 56% of net additions to global power capacity and considering only net investment in new power capacity the sector outpaced fossil fuels for the fourth year in a row.
However, the United Nations pointed out that REN 21's Renewables 2014 Global Status Report also stresses that governments can do far more to accelerate the pace of change "by providing greater policy certainty and smarter policy initiatives".
It added that a "second consecutive year of declining investment was due in part to uncertainty over incentive policies in Europe and the US", plus retroactive support cuts in countries such as Spain.
Elsewhere, the report reveals that China, the US, and Germany remain top of the table in terms of total installed renewable capacity while Uruguay, Mauritius and Costa Rica were among the top countries for investment in new renewable power and fuels relative to annual GDP.
By early 2014, at least 144 countries had renewable energy targets and 138 countries had renewable energy support policies in place, up from the 138 and 127 countries respectively in 2013.
Developing and emerging economies led the expansion in recent years and account for 95 of the countries with support policies, up from 15 in 2005.
The full report is available here.
Image: renewables growth is being driven by developing economies (sxc.hu)