Solar Energy Installations in 2017 Topped Gas, Coal and Nuclear Combined, Amid Steady Growth in Renewables

by BPVA on 11 April 2018

Solar Energy Installations in 2017 Topped Gas, Coal and Nuclear Combined, Amid Steady Growth in Renewables

Data released by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), and a joint report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) and the Frankfurt School’s UNEP Collaborating Centre (FS-UNEP-CC), show that renewable energy generation capacity grew by 8.3% in 2017, similar to the average annual growth rate in previous years. Growth in solar capacity alone exceeded the combined new capacity installations of coal, gas and nuclear power.

 

According to the IRENA Renewable Capacity Statistics 2018 report, 167 GW of renewable energy generation capacity was installed in 2017. The global total reached 2,179 GW, maintaining a growth rate of around 8.3% for the seventh straight year. IRENA’s publication presents renewable power generation capacity statistics for 2008-2017 across 200 countries and territories.

The report notes that, in 2017, global solar photovoltaic (PV) capacity grew by 32%, followed by wind energy growing by 10%. Underlying the growth were significant cost reductions for both technologies. Between 2010-2017 the levelized costs of electricity from solar PV fell by 73%, while that of onshore wind electricity fell by nearly 25%. The cost of both technologies is now within cost range of fossil-fuel based power.

The report also reviews capacity installation by region. China, the leader for global capacity installations, installed nearly half of all new 2017 capacity, followed by India with 10% of global installations. 64% of new capacity was installed in Asia, up from 58% in 2016. Europe installed 24 GW, followed by North America with 16 GW. Brazil’s installations increased tenfold to 1 GW. Off-grid renewable energy capacity, which is particularly important to provide energy access to people in remote areas, grew a record 10%, reaching 6.6 GW globally providing electricity to 146 million people.

Share this page...

Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Share