A new report out from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), REmap: Roadmap for a Renewable Energy Future, shows that doubling the use of renewable energy like solar power throughout the world over the next 15 years will save trillions thanks to avoided costs of air pollution and climate change.
“The age of renewable energy is here, but without concerted efforts, its potential will not be reached fast enough to meet international climate and development targets,” said Mr. Amin. “For decision makers in the public and private sectors alike, this roadmap sends an alert—both on the opportunities at hand and on the costs of not taking them.”
The new report recommends options to boost renewable energy across the globe from just over 18 percent now to 36 percent by 2030. It’s the second version of the report and looks at energy use in 40 economies that represent 80 percent of global energy use.
“Achieving a doubling is not only feasible, it is cheaper than not doing so,” said IRENA Director-General Adnan Amin. “REmap shows this is not only the most economic pathway, but also the most socially and environmentally conscious. It would create more jobs, save millions of lives from reduced air pollution and set us on a pathway to limit global temperature rise to two degrees as agreed in Paris.”
Doubling the amount of renewable energy by 2030 can save up to $4.2 trillion a year by 2030—that’s 15 times more than the costs associated with adding that amount of renewable energy into the mix, the report found. Coupling the use of increased renewable energy with greater energy efficiency could keep the global rise of temperature within 2°C. To meet that goal, however, renewable energy must be installed six times faster than it current is.
“The energy transition is well underway in the power sector, but to reach global climate and development targets, the next phase will require more focus on transport, heating and cooling,” said Director of IRENA’s Innovation and Technology Centre Dolf Gielen. “If a doubling is achieved, these sectors would account for roughly half of renewable energy use in 2030 and so must scale-up dramatically to meet that target.”
The report makes recommendations to achieve the goal. It said market distortions must be corrected to create a level playing field, the energy system needs greater flexibility to accommodate variable renewable energy sources. New renewable-based heating and cooling solutions need to be developed. It also recommends promoting electric transport and bioenergy.
View the report: http://ow.ly/Zi5U8Tweet