REN21 is the Renewable Energy Policy Network for the 21st Century, formed in June 2004 after the International Conference for Renewable Energies in Bonn, Germany. It is the global renewable energy multi-stakeholder policy network.
As per REN21’s latest report on Renewables Global Status, the growth in renewable energy is at much faster rate than fossil fuels, with the investments in renewables rising for the fifth consecutive year. It further states the investment of $242 billion in renewables is almost double than investment in new fossil fuel power plants.
A large number of solar energy projects were installed across the globe in the year 2016 than any other type of renewable energy. By the end of 2016, the world’s solar energy output stands at 303 GW versus 228 GW in the year 2015, that’s a massive addition of 75 GW in one calendar year. The year 2016 saw an addition of 161 gigawatts (GW) of capacity in renewables taking it to almost 2,017 GW, that is a rise of nearly 9% compared to to the year 2015. The report also says in the year 2016, the renewables accounted for nearly 62% of net additions to global power generation capacity and worldwide CO2 emissions remained stable for the consecutive third year in a row.
This report is really a big pleasing news for the planet. Burning fossil fuels such as oil, coal, and other forms of carbon-based fuels generate a large amount of CO2 and greenhouse gases which contribute to climate change. A growing trend towards renewables like solar, wind, and hydropower is definitely helping the environment and controlling the global warming. The cost of installing PV (solar photovoltaics), solar panels and the wind turbines have become cost-competitive almost everywhere around the world as compared to the installation of the coal fired power plants. Almost all countries have exerted stringent pollution control norms on such power plants, to stop them emitting hazardous gasses in the environment. Treating these gases before emitting to achieve these norms needs heavy investments and is a very costly process.