NEW investment in renewables soared to more
than 300 billion dollars last year with record-breaking wind and solar
installations, a new report revealed today.
The spectacular growth of renewables has
reached a tipping point, driving a landmark year in which the world economy
grew for the first time without a parallel increase in emissions.
More than a quarter (27.8%) of the world’s
generating capacity now comes from renewables, with developing world
investments on par with that of the developed world, according to the REN 21’s
Global Renewables Status report.
Solar PV capacity has grown at a phenomenal
rate, up 48-fold over the last decade while wind power capacity is up 8-fold.
But Australia did not reap the benefits of
the record-breaking renewables year in 2014, with investment and jobs in the
renewables industry slashed due to ongoing reviews of the Renewable Energy
Target, which the Australian Government has said it will cut.
Investment in renewable energy in Australia
will be reduced by $5-6 billion as a result of the cuts, according to
Climate Council CEO Amanda McKenzie said renewable
energy was the new economic powerhouse worldwide, attracting investment and
“We are witnessing an historic energy
revolution and the countries that ride the renewables wave are going to leave
the latecomers for dust,” she said.
“Unless Australia puts in place supportive
policy settings which will allow our research and development to be applicable,
Australia will increasingly be a buyer of offshore equipment and technology.”
The Climate Council’s Professor Will
Steffen said renewable energy was key to tackling climate change.
“Renewable energy must make up more than 80
per cent of electricity generation by 2050 to avoid the most dangerous impacts
of climate change,” he said.
“Joining the worldwide shift to renewables
will not only boost Australia’s bottom line, it’s crucial to protecting us from
the consequences of large-scale changes to the climate such as sea level rise
and more frequent and intense extreme weather.”
You can access the report here:
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Record-breaking Year Globally In Renewables.pdf