Global renewable energy capacity grew by a record 9.6 per cent last year but needs to grow by three times the current rate to limit global warming, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) said on Tuesday.
IRENA’s annual report on renewable energy statistics said global renewable energy capacity amounted to 3,372 gigawatts (GW) at the end of last year, some 295 GW or 9.6 per cent higher than the previous year.
Some 83 per cent of all new power capacity last year was from renewables.
“This continued record growth shows the resilience of renewable energy amidst the lingering energy crisis,” IRENA’s Director General Francesco La Camera said.
“But annual additions of renewable power capacity must grow three times the current level by 2030 if we want to stay on a pathway limiting global warming to 1.5C,” he added.
Solar and wind energy dominated the renewable capacity expansion, jointly accounting for 90 per cent of all net renewable additions in 2022, the report said.
Almost half of the new capacity was added in Asia. China was the largest contributor, adding 141 GW to Asia’s new capacity.
Renewables in Europe and North America grew by 57.3 GW and 29.1 GW respectively, while the Middle East recorded its highest increase in renewables on record, with 3.2 GW of new capacity commissioned in 2022, an increase of 12.8 per cent from the previous year.
On Monday, a report by the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change said emissions must be halved by the mid-2030s if the world is to have any chance of limiting temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels – a key target enshrined in the global climate pact the Paris Agreement.