Record levels of renewable energy capacity in 2019
Published: 07 Apr 2020

The year 2019 represented an all-time record, where almost three-quarters of new electricity generation capacity used renewables.

New data provided by the International Renewable Energy Agency (Irena) shows that green technologies, including solar and wind power, now provide more than one-third of the world's energy, while fossil fuel plants are in decline across Europe and in the US, with more decommissioned than built.

The world investments in renewable energy cost about $3tn over the past decade, however, to address the climate emergency and fulfil the pledges for net-zero, Irena stresses that annual investments must double by 2030.

Director general of Irena, Francesco La Camera said the huge spending planned by governments in response to the coronavirus pandemic must support green initiatives instead of fossil fuels.

The data provided by Irena shows the increase in new renewable energy capacity slowed in 2019, from 179 GW to 176GW, but that new fossil fuel power capacity also fell. The total green energy installed to date around the world grew by 7.6%, with the UK's total rising 6.1%. The UK is now 11th in the world for installed renewables.