IRENA Releases Renewable Capacity Statistics 2024

Renewables Account For 86 Percent Of Global Power Sector Additions In 2023; Solar PV Grew By 345.5 GW

IRENA Releases Renewable Capacity Statistics 2024

IRENA’s latest report on 2023 global renewable energy capacity shows solar PV as the largest source of power generation with 345.5 GW. (Photo Credit: IRENA)

  • IRENA pegs new renewable energy generation capacity additions in 2023 at 473 GW 
  • Solar PV accounted for 345.5 GW of new capacity, taking its cumulative till last year to 1.42 TW 
  • IRENA believes, despite the strong growth of renewables, the world is not on track to add the required 7 TW by 2030 
  • Geographically, the global renewable energy growth is also uneven, leaving a vast majority of developing countries behind 

Global renewable energy capacity additions in 2023 grew by 473 GW, accounting for 86% of the total power capacity additions, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). Solar PV represented 73% of the total growth last year with 345.5 GW new additions. 

While IRENA does not specify the installations in DC or AC, its numbers are lower than Bloomberg New Energy Finance’s 444 GW DC new solar PV additions last year (see BNEF Counts 444 GW DC New Solar PV Capacity Additions In 2023).  

According to IRENA’s annual report Renewable Capacity Statistics 2024, China alone was responsible for 216.9 GW of new PV additions last year, helping take the cumulative installed global PV capacity to 1.419 TW. 

Wind energy came next with a 13% annual increase last year, expanding the cumulative to 1.017 TW, led by China and the US. 

Among other renewable energy sources, renewable hydropower capacityexcluding pumped hydroreached 1.27 TW, while off-grid electricity grew by 4.6% annually to 12.7 GW, dominated by off-grid solar energy that reached 5 GW by 2023. 

However, just like the maximum renewable energy growth was added by a few technologies, the expansion was also unevenly distributed geographically, points out IRENA. 

China, with its 297.6 GW new renewable energy capacity additions in 2023, represented 63% annual increase. In comparison, all of Africa saw a mere 4.6% annual increase in additions reaching a total 62 GW capacity. 

G7 nations, excluding the European Union (EU), added 69.4 GW of new renewable energy capacity in 2023, Europe expanded by 71.2 GW and North America installed 34.9 GW. The Middle East reported the highest expansion to date with 5.1 GW, representing a 16.6% annual increase, among other regions. 

IRENA analysts opine that this reflects a glaring gap with other regions, leaving a vast majority of developing countries behind, despite massive economic and development needs. 

The analysts also believe this growth of renewable energy is still not enough to achieve the required 7.2 TW of renewable power by 2030 to reach 11 TW global cumulative capacity (see Achieving 11 TW Renewable Energy target ‘Far From Assured’). At the end of 2023, the aggregate renewable energy installed capacity of the world reached 3.87 TW, as per the IRENA report. 

IRENA Director-General Francesco La Camera said, “Policy interventions and a global course-correction are urgently needed to effectively overcome structural barriers and create local value in emerging market and developing economies, many of which are still left behind in this progress. The patterns of concentration in both geography and technology threaten to intensify the decarbonisation divide and pose a significant risk to achieving the tripling target.” 

The complete IRENA report is available for free download on its website. 

About The Author

Anu Bhambhani

Senior News Editor: Anu Bhambhani is the Senior News Editor of TaiyangNews. --Email : [email protected] --

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