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Which are the top three countries leading the growth in the renewable energy market post-pandemic era?

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A significant disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic in the global energy system led to a sharp decline in energy demand and emissions from fossil fuels. However, it accelerated the transition to cleaner energy and created a massive opportunity for resilient energy systems based on renewable sources.

The top three countries that are leading the growth in the renewable energy market are:

  1. China has experienced significant growth in the renewable energy market as the world’s largest energy consumer and emitter. A huge investment in renewable energy development and deployment is driven by its ambitious targets to peak its carbon emissions by 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2060. According to the IEA, China added 136 GW of new renewable capacity in 2020, the largest annual increase by any country. It accounted for more than half of the global renewable capacity additions. China’s renewable capacity expansion was mainly driven by solar PV and wind power, which benefited from the government’s policies to support their deployment before the phase-out of feed-in tariffs by the end of 2020. The contribution led to its climate goals and economic growth, innovation, job creation, and air quality improvement.
  2. The US is the second-largest energy consumer and emitter. The US has a rich and diverse renewable energy resource base with wind, solar, hydro, bioenergy, geothermal, and marine energy. The US will install 29 GW of renewables in 2020, mostly wind and solar PV, accounting for 80% of its total electricity capacity additions. It is driven by several factors, such as the declining costs and improving performance of renewable technologies, the federal tax credits for wind and solar projects, state-level renewable portfolio standards and clean energy policies, corporate procurement and community choice aggregation of renewable electricity, and the increasing need for public awareness and support for clean energy. The mission supports reducing greenhouse gas emissions, enhancing its energy security, and stimulating its economic recovery, innovation, competitiveness, and job creation.
  3. India is the third-leading country in the renewable energy market. India is one of the world’s fastest-growing economies and energy consumers. A place with huge potential for renewable energy development, especially in solar and wind power, to meet its growing electricity demand and address its energy access and poverty challenges. An ambitious target of 175 GW of renewable capacity is set by 2022 and 450 GW by 2030. According to the IEA, India added 9 GW of renewable energy in 2020, despite the pandemic slowdown. The massive renewable energy growth was supported by several factors, such as the government’s policies and initiatives to promote renewable energy deployment and integration, such as competitive auctions, reverse bidding, green energy corridors, green power markets, falling costs, and improving the reliability of renewable technologies. More private sector players and foreign investors participate in renewable projects for rural development, air quality improvement, and climate change mitigation.

Well, we can say the pandemic opened the door to urgency and the opportunity for shifting away from fossil fuels and towards renewable energy sources for the benefit of health, the environment, the economy, and society. Renewable energy is also a necessity for a safer and better future for all.

Sources: alliedmarketresearch, IEA, Forbes, Renewable energy growth, weforum

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