Daily Management Review

IEA: Green economy sets a record


The green economy set a new record in 2020, the International Energy Agency (IEA) has calculated. Electricity production from renewable sources has grown at the fastest rate in the past two decades.

Activ Solar via flickr
Activ Solar via flickr
The amount of electricity produced by alternative pathways - through solar and wind generation - rose by 45 per cent to 280 gigawatts in 2020.

IEA experts believe that the main reasons for the growth were the policies of many countries seeking to switch to green energy and achieve carbon neutrality, the growing popularity of electric vehicles, as well as disruptions in the supply of raw materials for classic power sources - coal and gas - due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The IEA predicts further growth in clean electricity generation, which will be seen annually in the near term. The focus will be on developing solar power, as it is much cheaper than using both coal and gas and wind farms.

More than 80 per cent of the new solar panels and wind power plants installed in 2019-2020 are located in China, making it the world leader in renewable energy. This, however, carries additional risks, as it risks making importers of Chinese electricity dependent on Beijing's policies for energy security.

In addition, China has large reserves of mineral resources for the implementation of clean technologies and the ultimate energy transition (global shift to renewable energies). For example, China, together with the Congo, accounts for 70 % and 60 % of the world's cobalt and rare earth minerals respectively.

source: iea.org