A new report from the International Energy Agency (IEA) has had to be revised so as to include the nearly unbelievable growth figures in the renewable energy sectors of major countries like India, China, and the U.S, even as their economies struggle with COVID-19.
Spurred on by long-term contracts, a slight 5% dip in global energy demand, priority access to power grids, and continuous installation of new renewable power plants, worldwide growth in renewable energy will reach 7% by the end of 2020.
To say that the period from January to October of 2020 has been economically uncertain would be an understatement, but that hasn’t stopped an evidently unhaltable stream of investment going into of renewable energy installation the world over.
This period has seen a 15% increase in auctioned-off renewable energy when measured against the same period last year, and compared with 2019, the 2020 average share price of publicly traded solar power companies has more than doubled.
Other measures of increase are a healthy 4% growth in new installations of renewable infrastructure and plants, amounting to around 200 gigawatts in the U.S. and China, while policy changes in the two nations have seen a 30% jump in production of wind and PV solar power sources.
The forecasts for 2021 are even sunnier. India and the EU will lead a big drive that will, according to estimates from the IEA, result in a record setting 10% expansion in renewables by the end of 2021.
Market prices can be driven as much by a sort of mob-mentality collective belief than by actual economics. There was a period in early September, for example, when Tesla owned half of all market share in the automotive sector, despite the fact they sell less than a million cars a year.
The belief that Tesla stock never went down drove a huge amount of speculative money into the shares, making the company worth far more than what it makes from manufacturing and selling vehicles.
Already the cheapest forms of new energy installations around, PV solar panels and wind farms, generate the cheapest costs of electricity in history, something South Australia got to enjoy last month.
The IEA predicts that the “total installed wind and solar PV capacity is on course to surpass natural gas in 2023 and coal in 2024. Solar PV alone accounts for 60% of all renewable capacity additions through 2025.”
By 2025, coal could seem relatively pointless, as not only is renewable energy the cheapest in history, but it will be on track to supply the majority of the world.