Energy transition. Image: Olivier Le Moal Shutterstock
The transition to renewable energies is essential for the survival of the planet. Here are a number of key factors for its momentum.
The Paris Agreement proposes a common climate policy to ensure the transition to a clean energy system, requiring differentiated efforts among the countries with the highest emissions.
The goals of the Paris agreement include keeping the rise in global average temperatures well below 2 degrees Celsius and limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius this century.
The use of renewable energy combined with the electrification of transport can allow the fulfillment of global climate goals, according to the analysis of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). The most relevant thing is that you can do it immediately and substantially.
It is expected that by 2050, electricity from renewable energies will have a share of almost 50%. In the years to come, 86% of the world’s energy demand will be able to be supplied with clean energies given the emergence of renewable hydrogen as a fuel.
The transition to a more sustainable energy model requires $15 trillion by 2050. While the sum is high, it is expected that it can be substantially reduced as solar power becomes more competitive and its implementation costs lower.
The study shows that for every dollar spent on the energy transition, a benefit of between 3 and 7 dollars would be obtained, that is, 65 billion dollars and 160 billion dollars in cumulative terms during the period until 2050.
The total cost of the energy system includes the cost of generation and the cost of integration. The cost of generation is associated with the production of energy. It is usually measured with the Levelized Cost of Energy (LCoE) indicator.
Electrification of transport. Image: Naypong Studio Shutterstock
The integration costs are related to the connection to the system, so that the supply meets the demand.
While the LCoE of renewables is declining rapidly, their fluctuating characteristics undermine some of the benefits of cost reduction. However, they can decrease significantly depending on the flexibility of the energy system.
Although there is progress in the implementation of renewable energy, its pace is very slow. Emissions have even increased 1% per year on average in the last five years.
To achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement, greater government involvement is required. By mid-century, the world economy will be larger, and the jobs created in the energy sector will boost global employment by 0.2%.
10.3 million people work in the field of renewable energy worldwide and it is expected that there will be around 24 million worldwide by 2030.
An example is Germany. With the use of renewable energies, it has avoided the generation of more than 100 million tons of CO2 in 2018.
More information: irena.org