IEA Predicts Renewable Installation Will Slow in 2023

IEA Predicts Renewable Installation Will Slow in 2023

In a new report, the International Energy Agency (IEA) suggests that renewable power growth is predicted to slow in 2023. Last year represented record growth in the renewables sector, so much that 38% of the world’s electricity was generated through renewable sources.

This year is looking to be another promising one for renewables, with installations increasing by over 8% compared to last year. But without stronger policies to promote clean energy, this movement may lose momentum.

According to a press release from the IEA:

Based on today’s policy settings … renewable power’s global growth is set to lose momentum next year. In the absence of stronger policies, the amount of renewable power capacity added worldwide is expected to plateau in 2023, as continued progress for solar is offset by a 40% decline in hydropower expansion and little change in wind additions.

International Renewable Energy Agency: Renewable Energy and Jobs | Annual Review 2021, October 21, 2021.

Why This Matters

A recent study found that oil and gas production must completely stop in rich countries by 2034 to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius. More renewable energy has been installed to pick up the slack with so much progress that the IEA predicted renewables will account for over 95% of new power capacity through 2026. At the same time, without significant policy changes, the agency predicts the US will continue producing record amounts of oil and gas.

Last year, the IEA issued a comprehensive roadmap of what it would take for the world to reach net-zero emissions by 2050 while keeping to the 1.5-degree goal. While one recent study found a 2-degree rise could be prevented if countries keep the climate pledges they made at last year’s COP26, another found that there is a 50-50 chance of the earth breaking the 1.5-degree Celsius limit.

IEA: A 10-Point Plan to Cut Oil Use, March 18, 2022.

The Economist: See what three degrees of global warming looks like, October 7, 2021.

Reuters: World could see 1.5C of warming in next five years, May 10, 2022.

CBS: Huge carbon emissions cuts needed, UN climate report finds, April 4, 2022.

Reaching Net Zero

Some states, and not just the blue ones, are taking action to keep their renewable sector growing. Maryland’s Republican Governor Lawrence Hogan recently signed the Climate Solutions Now Act of 2022 into law. The legislation will require the state to reduce GHG emissions to 60% below 2006 levels by 2031 and attain net zero by 2045. Meanwhile, New York is installing a record-breaking offshore wind project, called the New York Bight, along the coast it shares with New Jersey.

And for the first time on April 30, the entire state of California’s energy needs were met with renewable energy. While only for a whole two minutes, it signaled the possibility of the state meeting its goal of 100% renewable energy by 2045.

CNBC: US is 30 years behind on renewable energy investments, says former Rep. Donna Edwards, May 10, 2022.

TODAY: Off-Shore Wind Farms Provide Promising Roadmap For More Clean Energy, September 19, 2021.

France 24: Texas blown away by wind power, June 14, 2021.

IEA: A 10-Point Plan to Cut Oil Use (briefing), March 18, 2022.