RE capacity needs grow 3 times to curb rise in global temp: Report

Energy transition depends on how quickly zero-carbon alternatives can be phased up, while ensuring energy security so that nobody is left behind

NTPC REL Wind Energy Plant

New Delhi: The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in a report said that capacity addition of renewable energy needed to grow at over three times annually to keep within the reach the target of limiting global temperature increase to 1.5 degree Celsius.

The report, called ‘The World Energy Transitions Outlook (WETO) 2023’, has called for annual renewable power additions of 1,000 GW by 2030. “In 2022, the global capacity additional was around 300 GW, However, the gap between what has been achieved and what is required continues to grow,” the IRENA report stated.

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The agency its its report further asked for raising global ambition in renewables deployment, by enabling physical infrastructure, policy and regulations support, and underlining institutional and workforce capabilities. “More ambitious renewable energy targets are needed and the world must add an average of 1,000 GW of renewable power capacity annually by 2030, as well as significantly increase the direct use of renewables in end-use sectors,” it said.

IRENA’s director general Francesco La Camera said, “We face the harsh reality that we are not on track to deliver on the Paris Agreement. Our only option is to follow the most promising, science-based pathway one that puts renewable energy at the centre of the solution, while leading countries to energy security, reduced energy costs, and forward-looking industrial development. The energy transition must become a strategic tool to foster a more equitable and inclusive world. COP28 and the Global Stocktake must not only confirm our deviation from a 1.5°C pathway, but also provide a strategic blueprint to steer us back on track.”

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On the other hand, COP28 president-designate, Sultan al-Jaber, noted that a goal alone is not enough. He said that the speed at which the energy transition happens depends on how quickly zero-carbon alternatives can be phased up, while ensuring energy security so that nobody is left behind.

“We also need the political will to create the necessary conditions to rapidly scale up renewables. This must create the frameworks for end-to-end delivery and provide the accessible and affordable finance necessary for project pipelines. To meet our 2030 targets, we need urgent action to fast track expansions of grid infrastructure, to reduce permitting timelines, and to reduce the cost of capital in emerging markets and developing economies,” the president designate.

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The report also pointed out all agencies involved in development of renewable energy needed to work in tandem to raise the physical infrastructure, frame enabling policies and regulations, realign skills and institutional capacity so that the constraints in the progress for energy transition is done away with.

Calling for enhanced international collaborations, the report said that speed and scale to the energy transition necessitated an assessment of the roles and responsibilities of national and regional entities, international organizations, international financial institutions and multilateral development banks to ensure their optimal contributions to the energy transition. It also means ensuring that funds reach the world’s most vulnerable, the report said.

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