In a bid to combat climate change and accelerate the global transition to clean energy, COP28 President Sultan al-Jaber has set an ambitious target of tripling the world’s renewable generation capacity to around 11 TW by 2030. However, achieving this goal would require an unprecedented acceleration in the deployment of solar and wind technologies, which currently have a combined capacity of 2.3 TW.
According to analysis by S&P Global Commodity Insights, it is estimated that approximately 4.6 TW of solar and wind capacity will be added over the next decade, requiring a staggering $4.7 trillion investment. While this represents significant progress, it falls short of the target, with installed capacity only expected to double by 2030 in the base case scenario.
The report also highlights that solar energy will see the most substantial increase, with 3.4 TWac (4.2 TWdc) of capacity expected to be added within the next eight years. This would more than triple the current installed solar capacity, making it the most significant contributor to the expansion of renewable energy sources.
The wind sector is poised for significant growth as well, with 1.2 TW of capacity projected to be added, including 264 GW of offshore wind installations by 2030. When combined with other renewable energy sources like hydro, the total renewable capacity is expected to exceed 8 TW by 2030, excluding storage.
To ensure the successful integration of the volatile wind and solar generation profiles, an additional 650 GW of battery capacity is forecast to be deployed. This will help stabilize the grid and enable a seamless transition to a cleaner and more sustainable energy system.
While tripling renewables by 2030 is considered an ambitious yet achievable goal by the International Energy Agency, governments must take stronger policy actions to secure resilient technology supply chains and support renewable deployment in emerging and developing economies.
With solar manufacturing capacity projected to reach 1 TW per year by 2024, the future growth of solar energy looks promising. However, the wind industry, especially offshore wind, faces challenges in its supply chain, with major suppliers experiencing financial losses due to demands for larger turbine sizes.
Despite the hurdles, the renewable energy sector remains poised for significant expansion in the coming years as the world strives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and transition to a more sustainable energy future.
1. Why is there a push to triple global renewable generation capacity by 2030?
The push to triple global renewable generation capacity by 2030 stems from the urgency to combat climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. By transitioning to clean energy sources like solar and wind, we can mitigate the impacts of climate change and create a more sustainable future.
2. How much investment is required to achieve this target?
According to analysis by S&P Global Commodity Insights, an estimated $4.7 trillion investment is needed to add approximately 4.6 TW of solar and wind capacity by 2030.
3. Which renewable energy sources will contribute the most to this expansion?
Solar energy is projected to be the largest contributor to the expansion of renewable generation capacity, with 3.4 TWac of capacity expected to be added by 2030. Wind energy, particularly offshore wind, will also play a significant role, with 1.2 TW of capacity projected to be added.
4. How will the integration of renewable energy into the grid be facilitated?
To integrate the volatile wind and solar generation profiles, an additional 650 GW of battery capacity is forecast to be deployed. This will help stabilize the grid and ensure a reliable and efficient energy supply from renewable sources.
5. What challenges does the wind industry face in meeting this target?
The wind industry, especially offshore wind, faces challenges in its supply chain, with major suppliers experiencing financial losses due to demands for larger turbine sizes. However, efforts are being made to address these challenges and accelerate the growth of the wind sector.