Renewable production not keeping pace with new demand

Posted: July 15, 2021 by oldbrew in Analysis, Emissions, Energy, net zero
Tags: , , , , ,

energy1The amount of additional electricity required worldwide is more than any existing increase in output from renewables. As value-for-money fossil fuels – coal and gas mostly – fill the breach as it were, ‘decarbonisation’ is in effect going negative (if it was ever doing anything else). Let COP26 delegates chew on such ‘challenges’ as they’re called, in Glasgow later this year.
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The planet’s electricity demand is expected to rebound strongly this year and next after falling by around 1% in 2020, according to a new publication from the International Energy Agency.

Released on Thursday, the IEA’s electricity market report predicts that global demand for electricity will increase by nearly 5% in 2021 and 4% in 2022 as economies around the world seek to recover from effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, says France24.

The report from the Paris-based organization notes that although electricity production from renewable energies “continues to grow strongly” – it is expected to increase by 8% this year and more than 6% in 2022 – it does not, cannot meet the growing demand.

The IEA said that renewables “should only be able to serve about half of the projected growth in global demand in 2021 and 2022”. At the other end of the spectrum, electricity production from fossil fuels was to “cover 45% of the additional demand in 2021 and 40% in 2022”.

When it comes to carbon dioxide emissions from the electricity sector, the IEA report predicts an increase of 3.5% this year and 2.5% in 2022.

Overall, fossil fuels remain dominant in electricity generation. Last year, coal was responsible for 34% of global production, while gas accounted for 25%, the IEA said. Renewable energies and nuclear combined to take a 37% share.

“Renewable energy is experiencing impressive growth in many parts of the world, but it is still not where it needs to be to put us on the path to achieving net zero emissions by mid-century,” Keisuke Sadamori, director of energy for IEA markets and security, said in a statement.

“As the economy rebounds from the pandemic, we have seen an increase in the generation of electricity from fossil fuels,” Sadamori added. “To move to a sustainable path, we need to massively increase investments in clean energy technologies, especially renewables and energy efficiency. “

Continued here.

  1. Coeur de Lion says:

    And one hopes the Asian and African coal fired power station building will provide electricity for the billion who lack it. A vast increase in supply to be expected. So good for the environment and the planet.

  2. Graeme No.3 says:

    They never mention what area would be needed for all those wind turbines and solar panels. As one Dutch engineer calculated that just replacing their existing electricity generation would require covering the whole of The Netherlands and most of the North Sea with turbines.
    And the more turbines the less the output of each.

  3. oldbrew says:

    Germany put a lot of wind power in the North Sea, then found building transmission lines across the country to the south ran into heavy opposition. Result was too much power at times, and nearby countries blocking off the unwanted overloads.

    Not as simple as just sticking turbines up.

  4. oldbrew says:

    There’s also the small problem of copper supplies…

    The World Will Need 10 Million Tons More Copper to Meet Demand
    Mar 19 2021

    The copper industry needs to spend upwards of $100 billion to close what could be an annual supply deficit of 4.7 million metric tons by 2030 as the clean power and transport sectors take off, according to estimates from CRU Group. The potential shortfall could reach 10 million tons if no mines get built, according to commodities trader Trafigura Group. Closing such a gap would require building the equivalent of eight projects the size of BHP Group’s giant Escondida in Chile, the world’s largest copper mine.

    Read more at:
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    Upward price pressure followed by shortages?

  5. Gamecock says:

    ‘Renewable production not keeping pace with new demand’

    Bug or feature?

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