Renewable energy in the world, records obscured by fossils

2021 saw record increases in green capacity, particularly at the level of electricity, but the share of renewables in final consumption remains stable. And it was the fault of the energy crisis that ignited hunger again

Credits: leeavison ©

The Global State of Renewable Energy Report 2022 has been published

( – 2021 was another record year for the new capacity of Renewable energy in the world. The sector has grown, driven by the excellent performance of PV and wind energy 17% (+314 GW) in the electricity sector; This brings to a total of 3,146 gigawatts installed globally. But if you look at the global energy system as a whole, the green results appear to be partially overshadowed fossil sources. The REN21 . Global State of Renewable Energy Report 2022an international reference document for economic, political and technological trends in the field of green energy.

The report annually assesses the spread of renewable energies in the world, and in this seventeenth edition it highlights an alarming element: despite the growth in capacity, the overall share of renewable energy in final energy consumption remains stagnant. In other words, the often cited environmental shift does not occur.

Renewable energy in the world 2021
Credits: REN21

Renewables vs. fossils

the case? In part, the strong economic recovery that in 2021 contributed to an increase 4% of the final energy consumption, mostly satisfied with fossil fuels. In addition to the boom in demand are the effects commodity crisis Based on Russian war in Ukraine. REN21 notes that the past year marked the end of the era of low-cost gas and oil, with the largest increase in energy prices since the 1973 oil crisis.

“Despite national commitments to decarbonize, the reality is that in response to the energy crisis, most countries are back in search of new sources of fossil fuels and burning more coal, oil and gas,” I announced frog adib, Executive Director of REN21. But “The old energy system is collapsing before our eyes and with it the global economy. However, the response to the crisis and climate goals should not conflict. Renewable energy is the best and cheapest solution to deal with energy price fluctuations. We need to increase its share and make it a priority in economic and industrial policy. We cannot fight the fire More fire.”

The growth of renewables in the world, data by sector

Bioenergy: In 2021, biofuel production returned to 2019 levels after declining in 2020 due to the transportation blockade due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the industry was limited by the high costs of raw materials. In the electricity sector, the contribution of bioenergy increased by 10%.

geothermal temperature: In 2021, 0.3 GW of high enthalpy plants were installed, bringing the global total to about 14.5 GW. On the other hand, the low enthalpy geothermal capacity reached 35 GW.

Hydroelectricity: The global hydropower market is progressing in line with long-term trends, with new capacity additions of at least 26 GW in 2021; This brings the total installed hydroelectric capacity globally to about 1,197 gigawatts.

marine power: After significant delays in planned projects, the industry rebounded in 2021 as supply chains recovered from pandemic shutdowns. About 4.6 MW of capacity was added during the year, bringing the total installed operating capacity to 524 MW.

PV: Solar PV maintained its record streak, adding 175 GW of new capacity in 2021 to reach a cumulative total of about 942 GW.

wind strength: In 2021, approximately 102 GW of wind capacity was installed, of which 18.7 GW were offshore. China leads the market, followed closely by the United States, Brazil, Vietnam and the United Kingdom.

Thermal solar energy: The global solar thermal market grew by 3% in 2021 to 25.6 GW, bringing the total global capacity to about 524 GW. Once again, China led the new installations, followed by India, Turkey, Brazil and the United States.

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