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Renewable Energy Market Overview
The global renewable energy market size is projected to grow from USD 184.3 billion in 2020 to USD 226.1 billion by 2021, at a CAGR of 22.7% in the realistic scenario during the forecast period. The Covid-19 crisis is slowing – but not stopping – global renewable energy capacity growth. Because of the unprecedented Covid-19 crisis, the number of new renewable power installations worldwide is expected to decline this year, marking the first annual decline in 20 years. However, given the government’s supportive policies, growth is expected to resume next year as most of the projects that have been delayed come online.
Rising climate awareness among people all over the world has led to an increase in concerns regarding the carbon footprint. Renewable energy sources are viable greener substitutes to the carbon-based energy sources and go a long way in fostering world’s determination to implement sustainable development goals by 2030. These concerns worldwide are set to fuel the market. Along with this greater focus of the world in harnessing energy from non-conventional sources like solar, wind, and tides among others by developing advanced technology and cutting cost presents the higher potential for the growth of the market.
We may have reached the tipping point for energy change, with renewable energy firms outperforming fossil fuel majors in 2020, analysts forecasting a return to increased funding, and eight out of ten of the world’s largest economies pledging to net zero by 2050. We’ve put together a guide to the biggest recent trends and the major forces transforming the global renewable market in 2021 to help you understand what’s driving the renewable expansion—and what could be holding it back.
Trends Influencing Renewable energy market in 2021
- America’s solar broke good and bad records—in the same year
According to Wood Mackenzie and the Solar Energy Industries Group, residential installations in the United States fell nearly 20% from the first quarter of 2020, the most ever, as the pandemic triggered stay-at-home orders. By the end of the year, however, the sector bounced back, and the country added 19 gigawatts of total solar power, based on projections in December from Wood Mackenzie and SEIA.
- Installations doubled in China
Businesses needed solar even after the government shut down vast swaths of the country earlier this year. Following President Xi Jinping’s announcement in September that China will achieve carbon neutrality by 2060, the country’s main solar industry group expects a record surge in business over the next five years.
- Spain emerges as solar powerhouse
According to data from the country’s grid manager Red Electrica, electricity from solar farms in the country with Europe’s greatest solar capacity increased by over 60% in 2020 compared to 2019, producing over 15,000 gigawatt hours of power. According to BloombergNEF, while Spain still has about a third of the installed solar capacity as the EU’s leader Germany, the country’s sector is expected to expand at about twice the rate in the next two years.
- Renewables top fossil fuels in European energy
As total power demand dropped during the pandemic, renewable energy’s share of the grid in Europe increased. According to environmental organisation Ember, about 40% of energy in the European Union came from renewable sources in the first half of 2020, compared to 34% from plants burning fossil fuels.
- K. goes coal-free for more than two months
A 67-day stretch without coal became the country’s longest since the Industrial Revolution, helping to make 2020 the country’s greenest year yet for its power grid. As wind farms provide an increasing share of the country’s electricity, Britain plans to phase out the polluting fuel by 2025.
- Solar installations dropped in India—by a lot
The world’s biggest lockdown in 2020 further harmed India’s debt-ridden utilities, resulting in a 72 percent decline in solar installations and the slowest addition of wind power in more than a decade.
- Australia’s grid is overwhelmed
High power prices and plenty of sunlight have fueled a love affair with rooftop solar, with around 29% of homes now getting panels installed. This is wreaking havoc on power utilities, with daytime demand for electricity from the grid dropping to all-time lows in three states by 2020, leaving costly power plants operating at less than half capacity.
- Solar-panel makers face rising prices
Two Chinese factories that manufacture polysilicon, a critical material for photovoltaic cells, were destroyed by an explosion and a flood, causing prices to skyrocket by 75 percent in less than two months. Solar glass prices soared as demand for two-sided, or bifacial, panels grew, while capacity was limited by Chinese government restrictions on polluting glass factories.
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