Renewables Hit 30% of Global Power

Renewables Hit 30% of Global Power

Renewables Hit 30% of Global Power

Renewables like solar and wind reached a record 30% of worldwide electricity generation in 2023, a “critical turning point” hailed by experts. The growth was driven by China, Brazil and others rapidly deploying wind and solar.

China alone accounted for over half of new solar and 60% of new wind amid continued coal expansion. Former UN climate chief Christiana Figueres said renewables’ falling costs have made fossil fuels “outdated.”

In 20 years, solar and wind soared from 0.2% to over 13% of global power due to improved policies, technologies and decreased costs. Solar prices halved in 2023 amid surging manufacturing.

At COP28, leaders pledged to triple renewable capacity by 2030, backing renewables as key to urgently needed emissions cuts over riskier technologies. Ember suggests global fossil power likely peaked in 2023, meaning total emissions could start falling soon, though not fast enough for climate goals yet.

However, developing nations face challenges financing transitions due to high borrowing costs and lack of investment despite huge renewable potential, especially in Africa. Financing will be a major issue at COP29 in Azerbaijan.


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Photo: Photovoltaic power generation at Xishan Village of Yuanquan Township in Zibo City, east China’s Shandong Province. Photo by Xinhua

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