Report Provides Path to Double Global Renewable Energy

The global renewable energy share can reach and exceed 30 percent by 2030 at no extra cost, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) says in a recent report, “REmap 2030″. The study maps out a pathway for doubling the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix based on the technologies that are available today. Energy efficiency and improved energy access can advance the share of renewables in the global energy mix up to 36 percent, according to the report.

“There is a strong economic case for the renewable energy transition. When considering climate-change mitigation, health impact and job creation, the transition practically pays for itself,” says Adnan Z. Amin, IRENA’s Director-General. “More renewables in the energy system provide greater flexibility, increase energy independence and make the system more resilient.”

The deployment of modern renewables–renewable energy sources that exclude traditional use of biomass–needs to grow more than threefold, the study shows. A rethinking of energy taxes and subsidies is critical to the economic case for renewable energy. A reduction of fossil-fuel subsidies will facilitate the uptake of renewables. Subsidies for renewable energy can disappear altogether, if green house gas emissions and other air pollution are reasonably priced.

“Many governments are underestimating the potential of renewables in their planning the for energy transition. To reach the goal of doubling the share of renewable energy by 2030, additional efforts are needed, particularly in the building, industry and transport sectors,” adds Dolf Gielen, director of IRENA’s Innovation and Technology Centre in Bonn, Germany. “We identified five areas of national action: planning realistic but ambitious transition pathways, creating an enabling business environment, managing knowledge of technology options and their deployment, ensuring smooth integration of renewables into the existing infrastructure and unleashing innovation.”

“REmap 2030” builds on the analysis of the energy supply and demand of 26 countries, which account for 74 percent of projected global total final energy consumption in 2030. IRENA collaborates with member states and research institutions for “REmap 2030,” which derives its objective from the United Nations Secretary General’s Sustainable Energy for All initiative.

The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) is mandated as the global hub for renewable-energy cooperation and information exchange by 124 Members (123 States and the European Union). Over 40 additional countries are in the accession process and actively engaged. Formally established in 2011, IRENA is the first global intergovernmental organization to be headquartered in the Middle East.

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