The world’s total renewable-based power capacity will grow by 50% between 2019 and 2024, according to an International Energy Agency (IEA) report on Monday.
According to the IEA's latest renewable energy market forecast entitled "Renewables 2019" report, the additional capacity of 1,200 gigawatts (GW) [between 2019 and 2024] is driven by cost reductions and concerted government policy efforts,
"The installation of solar PV systems on homes, commercial buildings and industry is set to take off over the next five years," IEA said and added that the applications are mostly distributed Photovoltaics (PV). The agency also stated that solar PV accounts for 60% of the rise.
The share of renewables in global power generation rises from 26% today to 30% in 2024.
- Policy, regulatory and system integration of clean energy
Fatih Birol, the IEA’s Executive Director, stated that the report highlights the three main challenges that need to be overcome for speeding up the deployment of renewables. The obstacles are policy and regulatory uncertainty, high investment risks and system integration of wind and solar PV.
"Renewables are already the world's second largest source of electricity, but their deployment still needs to accelerate if we are to achieve long-term climate, air quality and energy access goals," Birol underlined.
Distributed PV accounts for almost half of the growth in the overall solar PV market, he said.
"Still, the number of solar rooftop systems on homes is set to more than double to some 100 million by 2024, with the top markets on a per capita basis that year forecast to be Australia, Belgium, California, the Netherlands and Austria. As costs continue to fall, we have a growing incentive to ramp up the deployment of solar PV," Birol explained.
- Cost of PV systems fall
IEA said that the cost of generating electricity from distributed solar PV systems is already below retail electricity prices in most countries.
The agency said that these costs will decline by a further 15% to 35% by 2024, making the technology more attractive and spurring adoption worldwide.
The report warns, however, that important policy and tariff reforms are needed to ensure distributed PV’s sustainable growth.
"By reforming retail tariffs and adapting policies, utilities and governments can attract investment in distributed PV while also securing enough revenues to pay for fixed network assets and ensuring that the cost burden is allocated fairly among all consumers," IEA explained.
The heat and power sectors become increasingly interconnected as renewable electricity used for heat rises by more than 40%.
"But overall, renewable heat potential remains vastly underexploited," according to the IEA.
The share of renewables in total heat demand is not forecasted to surpass 12% by 2024, calling for more ambitious targets and stronger policy support.
By Gulsen Cagatay