Science

Investments in renewable energy hit record levels

1 Jun 2016 | By Mansi Motwani
Expenditures on Green Energy

According to the Renewables Global Status report, in 2015, double the amount was spent in investments in renewables than new coal and gas-fired power plants.

By the end of 2015, renewable energy was enough to yield 23.7% of the world's electricity.

The report, released by REN21 stated that a record amount of 1,849 gigawatts (GW) of power from renewable sources was generated in 2015.

In context: Expenditures on Green Energy

IntroductionAbout REN21

REN21, the Renewable Energy Policy Network for the 21st Century is a global renewable energy multi-stakeholder policy network.

Its goal is to promote knowledge exchange and policy development towards a global transition to renewable energy.

An international non-profit association, it brings together governments, NGO's, research and academic institutions, international organisations and industries.

It is based at UNEP (United Nations Environment Programme) in Paris, France.

1 Jun 2016Investments in renewable energy hit record levels

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The top investors in renewables

Topping the league table for investment in renewable power and fuels apart from large-scale hydro was China, followed by the United States, Japan, UK and India. Mauritania came first in a league based on investment in proportion to GDP.
Poor countries invest more than the rich

International InvestorsPoor countries invest more than the rich

More than £107bn out of the total £196.5bn was invested by developing countries like China, India and Brazil.

China became the front-runner by expanding it's investments by 17%, which accounted for 36% of the total global investment.

There was a notable increase in investments in developing countries like Morocco, Uruguay, Philippines and Pakistan.

In developed countries, investments declined by 8% altogether.

EU fallsEurope no more the Global Leader

There was a considerable slump in Europe's investments on green energy, down 21% from the year before.

According to the report, Asia invested more into renewables than Europe for the first time in 2015.

Out of the total $328.9 billion invested globally in solar, wind and other renewable energy sources, Europe spent $48.8 billion, down from $62 billion a year earlier.

Record created despite low oil prices

Christine Lins, REN21’s executive secretary said, “What is truly remarkable about these results is that they were achieved at a time when fossil fuel prices were at historic lows, and renewables remained at a significant disadvantage in terms of government subsidies.”