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Renewables

Renewables, including solar, wind, hydro, biofuels and others, are at the centre of the transition to a less carbon-intensive and more sustainable energy system.

Renewables Jpg

Key findings

Total renewable electricity capacity additions, 2001-2027

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The world set to add as much renewable power in the next 5 years as it did in the past 20

Renewable capacity expansion in the next five years will be much faster than what was expected just a year ago. Over 2022-2027, renewables are seen growing by almost 2 400 GW in our main forecast, equal to the entire installed power capacity of China today. That’s an 85% acceleration from the previous five years, and almost 30% higher than what was forecast in last year’s report, making it our largest ever upward revision.

Renewables are set to account for over 90% of global electricity capacity expansion over the forecast period. The upward revision is mainly driven by China, the European Union, the United States and India, which are all implementing existing policies and regulatory and market reforms, while also introducing new ones more quickly than expected in reaction to the energy crisis.

Renewable power generation by technology in the Net Zero Scenario, 2010-2030

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Solar PV and wind are driving the growth in renewables generation, but activity needs to increase rapidly be in step with the Net Zero Scenario

Solar PV has been the fastest growing technology by capacity additions in recent years; however, even the record 150 GW added in 2021 is only about one-third of the average annual additions during 2022-2030 in the Net Zero Scenario milestones.

In the case of wind, average annual installations need to double those seen in 2021, while for hydropower and bioenergy, growth needs to be about double the average of the last five years. Overall, much greater endeavours are needed to put these mainstream technologies firmly on the Net Zero Scenario trajectory, while CSP, geothermal and ocean power are still well below the growth rates needed to get on track with the scenario’s long-term levels.

Renewables data explorer


The IEA/IRENA Renewables Policies Database provides information on policies and measures taken or planned to encourage the uptake of renewable energy in all IEA and IRENA Member countries and signatories.

Our work

The aim of the Bioenergy TCP is to increase knowledge and understanding of bioenergy systems in order to facilitate the commercialisation and market deployment of environmentally sound, socially acceptable, and cost-competitive, low-carbon bioenergy systems and technologies, and to advise policy and industrial decision makers accordingly.

The SolarPACES TCP supports collaboration to advance development and deployment of concentrating solar thermal technologies. From a system perspective, concentrating solar power (CSP) offers significant advantages. With built-in thermal storage, CSP can improve the flexibility and stability of power systems, provide dispatchable electricity and help integrating more variable renewables.

The Geothermal TCP promotes international collaboration fostering and enhancing the development and sustainable use of geothermal energy. Activities are chiefly directed towards the sharing of information; developing technologies, techniques and best practices for exploration, development and utilisation; and producing and disseminating authoritative geothermal information and data.

The Hydrogen TCP, founded in 1977, works to accelerate hydrogen implementation and widespread utilisation in the areas of production, storage, distribution, power, heating, mobility and industry. The Hydrogen TCP seeks to optimise environmental protection, improve energy security, transform global energy systems and grid management, and promote international economic development, as well as serving as the premier global resource for expertise in all aspects of hydrogen technology.

Hydropwer is the largest source of renewable electricity in the world and it is particularly suited to providing system flexibility. The Hydropower TCP is a global platform for advancing hydropower technology, encouraging the sustainable use of water resources for the development and management of hydropower.

The OES TCP connects organisations and individuals working in the ocean energy sector to accelerate the viability, uptake and acceptance of ocean energy systems in an environmentally acceptable manner. The work of the OES TCP covers all forms of energy generation in which sea water forms the motive power through its physical and chemical properties i.e. wave, tidal range, tidal and ocean currents, ocean thermal energy conversion and salinity gradients.

Established in 1993, the PVPS TCP supports international collaborative efforts to enhance the role of photovoltaic solar energy (PV) as a cornerstone in the transition to sustainable energy systems. The PVPS TCP seeks to serve as a global reference for policy and industry decision makers; to act as an impartial and reliable source of information on trends, markets and costs; and to provide meaningful guidelines and recommended practices for state-of-the-art PV applications.

Through multi-disciplinary international collaborative research and knowledge exchange, as well as market and policy recommendations, the SHC TCP works to increase the deployment rate of solar heating and cooling systems by breaking down the technical and non-technical barriers to increase deployment.

The Wind TCP’s mission is to stimulate co-operation on wind energy research, development, and deployment (RD&D). The Wind TCP provides high quality information and analysis to member governments and commercial sector leaders by addressing technology development, deployment and its benefits, markets, and policy options.