Solar and Wind to Push Global Renewable Energy Share

solar photovoltaic and wind powered street light
Solar photovoltaic and wind power are set to play an increasing role in global renewable energy generation over the next few years.
(cc) Argonne National Laboratory

What role will renewable energy play in global energy production over the next few years? A significant one, according to a new report from GBI Research, which predicts that renewable energy will claim a 36% share of global cumulative installed energy capacity by the end of this decade.

Business intelligence firm GBI Research’s new report “Cost of Power Generation — Renewables Compete with Conventional Alternatives as the Levelized Cost of Electricity is driven down by Technological Developments and Mass Deployments” forecasts that solar photovoltaic and wind energy will be the primary technologies forecast to drive global renewable energy installed capacity from 1,695 GW in 2012 to 2,762 GW in 2020 — boosting the industry’s share of the world total installed capacity from 30% to 36%.

The report provides the levelized cost of electricity for power generation from renewable resources such as biomass, wind, and solar photovoltaic from 2011 to 2020. The report was built using data and information sourced from proprietary databases, primary and secondary research, and in-house analysis conducted by GBI Research’s team of industry experts.

The solar PV sector has expanded massively in recent years, and with countries including India and China announcing ambitious future solar PV targets, there are no signs of this growth abating in the near future. Correspondingly, GBI Research predicts global solar PV installed capacity to reach 331 GW by 2020 from 97 GW in 2012, climbing at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 16.6%.

Spurred on by favorable government policies in countries such as Germany, China, and the US, the global installed capacity for wind is also expected to prove a key contributor to renewable energy, more than doubling from 284 GW in 2012 to 685 GW by 2020, according to GBI Research forecasts.

The capital costs of renewable energy generation are currently higher than those of conventional methods, but government initiatives and technological advances have steadily decreased renewable generation expenditure over the last four to five years, lowering the Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE) and further driving the industry.

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