The share of renewables in global electricity generation would need to more than double by 2030 to ensure the power sector is on a path to net-zero emissions, according to a report out Tuesday by several international organizations.
The share should rise from 28% today to between 61% and 65% by 2030, according to the report. That means boosting investments in the sector from the yearly $900 billion to $2 trillion by 2030.
The report is produced by the International Energy Agency, the International Renewable Energy Agency and the U.N. Climate Change High-Level Champions. It’s the first annual assessment following a commitment from 45 countries during the COP26 climate negotiations last year to make clean technologies the most affordable options in all key economic sectors by 2030.
The power sector contributes about a quarter of all global greenhouse gas emissions. Hydropower, wind and solar are the most widespread, though their prominence varies greatly from country to country and region to region.
Ensuring enough affordable renewable electricity is critical beyond just the sector because tackling climate change requires electrifying other large parts of the economy, especially transportation.
Asia boasts the highest renewable power generation capacity by region. However, the Asia Pacific region still relies on fossil fuels to satisfy 85% of its energy consumption needs.
Out of over $2.8 trillion of cumulative renewable energy investments made globally between 2010 and 2020, only 2% were in Africa, despite the region’s massive power needs and abundant resources, the report noted.
The report recommends, among other actions, governments construct new cross-border super grids this decade to expand the range of low-carbon power.