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REN21 And IRENA Launch 'The Renewables 2011 Global Status Report'
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REN21 And IRENA Launch 'The Renewables 2011 Global Status Report'

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The Global Status Report 2011 shows that the renewable energy sector continues to perform well despite continuing economic recession, incentive cuts, and low natural-gas prices.The report was commissioned by REN21 and produced in collaboration with a global network of research partners.

 

In 2010, renewable energy supplied an estimated 16% of global final energy consumption and delivered close to 20% of global electricity production. Renewable capacity now comprises about a quarter of total global power-generating capacity. Including all hydropower (estimated 30 GW added in 2010), renewable energy accounted for approximately 50% of total added power generating capacity in 2010.

“The global performance of renewable energy despite headwinds has been a positive constant in turbulent times”, says Mr. Mohamed El-Ashry, Chairman of REN21’s Steering Committee. “Today, more people than ever before derive energy from renewables as capacity continues to grow, prices continue to fall, and shares of global energy from renewable energy continue to increase.”

Renewable energy policies continue to be the main driver behind renewable energy growth. By early 2011, at least 119 countries had some type of policy target or renewable support policy at the national level, more than doubling from 55 countries in early 2005. More than half of these countries are in the developing world.

“Growth in renewables at the scale required will be dependent on enabling government policies. However, renewables are already moving closer to competitive costs or are competitive in some markets.” says Mr. Adnan Z. Amin, Director-General of IRENA. “At the national and local levels, such policies have had a major impact on driving renewable energy markets, investments, and industry development. Transitioning to a more sustainable development path will require even greater changes in policy design and regulation to overcome existing structural weaknesses.”

Last year, investment reached a record $211 billion in renewables -- about one-third more than the $160 billion invested in 2009, and more than five times the amount invested in 2004. Money invested in renewable energy companies, and in utility-scale generation and biofuel projects increased to $143 billion, with developing countries surpassing developed economies for the first time, as shown in the GSR’s recently released companion report, UNEP Global Trends in Renewable Energy Investment 2011. China attracted $48.5 billion, or more than a third of the global total, but other developing countries also experienced major developments in terms of policies, investments, market trends, and manufacturing. Beyond Asia, significant advances are also seen in many Latin American countries, and at least 20 countries in the Middle East, North Africa, and sub-Saharan Africa have active renewable energy markets, the report says.











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