New IRENA report stresses urgency of global course correction to achieve COP28 triple renewables goal

Written by
25 Mar 2024
New IRENA report stresses urgency of global course correction to achieve COP28 triple renewables goal

Persistent structural and systemic barriers, and a sizeable investment shortfall, already stymieing response despite record renewables growth in 2023

The establishment of conducive conditions for growth is critical if the consensus on capacity additions is to be realised, according to the Tracking COP28 outcomes: Tripling renewable power capacity by 2030 report. 

Presented this week at the Berlin Energy Transitions Dialogue as part of the International Renewable Energy Agency’s (IRENA) World Transitions Outlook, IRENA Director-General, Francesco La Camera, made it clear that reaching the target is “far from guaranteed,” despite technically feasibility and a strong case for economic viability. 

Report findings noted that successful delivery is contingent upon determination, policy support and investment at-scale, including addressing workforce capabilities, with concerted efforts needed from all stakeholders. It also highlighted the importance of closer international co-operation to support global momentum and action.

In 2023, a total of 473 GW was added to the global energy mix and post-COP28 outcomes, an average of close to 1,100 GW of annual clean energy capacity must be installed by 2030. Investment flows also need to accelerate from US$570 billion netted in 2023 to around US$1,550 billion between now and 2030. Deployment goals and an additional 7.2 TW of renewable power is central to achieving the 11 TW required by the end of the decade.

Commenting on the report findings, La Camera said: “As the custodian agency, IRENA monitors related progress across key indicators every year. Our data confirms that progress continues to fall short, and the energy transition remains off track. We urgently need a systemic shift away from fossil fuels to course-correct and keep the tripling goal within reach.”

The roadmap to tripling renewables globally includes accelerated investments in infrastructure and system operations, such as power grids and storage; revised policies and regulations, covering, for example, power market design and streamlined permitting; as well as measures to strengthen supply chains and develop strong workforce skillsets. In addition, significantly bolstering investments, including public funds facilitated through international collaboration, is a key consideration.

In its Renewable Energy Markets: GCC 2023 report, IRENA noted significant progress in renewables by GCC nations, with growth in installed capacity from almost zero to over 5 GW in 2022. Despite this, the share of renewables in the region’s total installed generation capacity stands at just three per cent.

At IRENA’s most recent Policy Talks panel session, held on 15th February 2024, a quartet of industry speakers, including Nawal Alhanaee, Director, Future Energy Department, Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure, UAE, discussed the topic Post-COP28: Translating pledges into action in the GCC. 

Concluding insights from the panellists highlighted the transition-positive enabling conditions with large public funds, abundant renewables potential and a solid energy infrastructure as key fundamentals to support COP28 outcomes. 

Energy & Utilities - Middle East and Africa Market, Outlook Report 2023.

This must-have report for industry players offers a thorough understanding of the latest developments, challenges, and opportunities in the region, supported by data, analysis, and expert insights. 

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