Investment in Renewables Renewable Energy Surge Continues

Editor: Dominik Stephan

Last year saw global investment in renewable rise 5 per cent to $285.9 billion, taking it above the previous record of $278.5 billion reached in 2011 at the peak of the ‘green stimulus’ programmes and the German and Italian rooftop solar booms.

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GLOBAL NEW INVESTMENT IN RENEWABLE ENERGY BY ASSET CLASS, 2004-2015, $BN
GLOBAL NEW INVESTMENT IN RENEWABLE ENERGY BY ASSET CLASS, 2004-2015, $BN
(Source: UNEP, Bloomberg New Energy Finance)

Figure 1 shows that the 2015 total was more than six times the figure set in 2004, and that investment in renewables has been running at more than $200 billion per year for six years now. Over the past 12 years, the total amount committed has reached $2.3 trillion.

More impressive in a way than the new dollar investment record set last year was the result in terms of gigawatts of capacity added.In 2015, some 134 GW of renewables excluding large hydro were commissioned, equivalent to about 53.6 per cent of the total power generation capacity completed in that year – the first time it has represented a majority. Out of the renewables total, wind accounted for 62 GW installed, and solar photovoltaics accounted for 56 GW, these are record figures and sharply up from their 2014 additions of 49 GW and 45 GW respectively.

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