Record 30% of global electricity sourced from renewables, driven by China


China is the main contribuitor of renewable energy last year. (Photo: iStock)

For the first time, the proportion of global renewable energy generation has surpassed 30%. The European energy think tank Ember optimistically believes that fossil fuel power generation is on a downward trend and that the goal of tripling renewable energy capacity by 2030 is likely to be achieved.

On May 8, Ember released its annual "Global Electricity Review" report, which analyzes the latest data from 80 countries. The report indicates that the share of renewable energy has significantly increased over the past 20 years, rising from just 19% in 2000 to 30.3% in 2023, primarily driven by noticeable growth in solar and wind energy contributions. Notably, more than half of last year's new green energy came from China.

The report highlights that since 2015, almost all power sources have seen growth, with solar energy experiencing the largest increase at 537% compared to 2015, followed by wind energy at 178%.

Declining solar panel prices drive installation growth

When evaluating the performance of individual countries, China, the world's largest carbon emitter, released 54.91 billion tons of CO2 last year, three times more than the United States (15.7 billion tons) and India (14.04 billion tons). However, China also made significant contributions to renewable energy generation last year, with over half of the global increase in solar and wind power generation coming from China, accounting for 51% and 60% respectively.

The think tank believes that 2023 marks a pivot point, especially with the trend of decreasing renewable energy generation costs. Dave Jones, Ember's global insights program director and one of the report's main authors, noted in an interview that solar panel prices dropped by 50% in the last few months of 2023, pushing installation volumes to a record high.

Ember's report further estimates that with the continued growth of global renewable energy, the share of fossil fuel power generation will decrease by 2% this year and, for the first time, fall below 60% of the global power generation share, marking a record low since data began in 2000. The report projects that renewable energy generation will increase by 1,221 TWh this year, doubling the growth from last year.

Related Topics
Three major impacts of the U.S. imposing a 100% tariff on Chinese EVs
Shell accused of selling 200 million of “phantom carbon credits”

More from Renewable Energy Certificate

Download request

Please fill out the form to download samples.

Job title
Company email
By using this site, you agree with our use of cookies.