New Delhi : Renewable sources are expected to dominate the growth of the global electricity supply over the next three years as together with nuclear power they meet the vast majority of the increase in global demand, according to a new International Energy Agency (IEA) report.
The rise in the adoption of renewables would help in reducing carbon emissions from the power sector.
After slowing slightly (by 2 per cent) last year amid the turmoil of the global energy crisis and extreme weather conditions in some regions, the growth in world electricity demand is expected to accelerate to an average of 3 per cent over the next three years, the IEA’s Electricity Market Report 2023 said.
India’s electricity consumption rose strongly in 2022, while China’s growth was subdued due to its zero-Covid policy.
“Emerging and developing economies in Asia are the driving forces behind this faster pace…,” said the report.
More than 70 per cent of the increase in global electricity demand is expected to come from China, India and Southeast Asia, it said, with a rider that considerable uncertainties remain over trends in China as its economy emerges from strict Covid restrictions.
“The good news is that renewables and nuclear power are growing quickly enough to meet almost all this additional appetite, suggesting we are close to a tipping point for power sector emissions,” said the agency’s executive director Fatih Birol.
Birol added governments the world over now need to enable low-emission sources to grow even faster and drive down emissions so that the world can ensure secure electricity supplies in line with climate goals.
The new IEA report also noted that electricity demand and supply worldwide are becoming increasingly weather dependent, with extreme conditions a recurring theme last year.
In addition to the drought in Europe, there were heatwaves in India, resulting in the country’s highest-ever peak in power demand. Similarly, central and eastern regions of China were hit by heatwaves and drought, which caused demand for air conditioning to surge. The United States also saw severe winter storms in December, triggering massive power outages.