Renewable energy jumped nearly 50% in 2020

Three men install solar panels.

278 gigawatts of capacity was added in 2020. Image: Unsplash/Science in HD

Niall McCarthy
Data Journalist, Statista
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  • Amidst the global pandemic, 278 gigawatts of renewable energy was added last year.
  • This was a 45% increase from the year before and the biggest increase in over 20 years.
  • The IEA attributes the boom to policy decisions in the United States, China and Vietnam.

Renewable power generation grew at the fastest rate for two decades in 2020 according to a new report from the International Energy Agency. 278 gigawatts of capacity was added last year, a 45 percent jump and the largest year-over-year increase since 1999. The growth was even more impressive given that it occurred in the midst of pandemic-induced supply chain challenges and construction delays.

The exceptional level of renewable energy capacity additions is expected to be maintained with 270 GW forecast to become operational in 2021 while 280 GW is predicted for 2022. The IEA attibutes the boom to policy decisions in the United States, China and Vietnam with China alone responsible for 80 percent of global annual installations between 2019 and 2020.

Renewable Energy Boomed In 2020
Renewable power generation grew at the fastest rate for two decades in 2020. Image: International Energy Agency
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Related topics:
COVID-19ElectricityEnergy TransitionDavos Agenda
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