US can more than triple its renewable energy says IRENA report

27 percent renewable energy is both technically possible and cost-effective by 2030 according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).
US can more than triple its renewable energy says IRENA report

The US can increase its renewable energy capacity from 7.5 percent of the energy mix in 2010 to 27 percent by 2030 according to a new report by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) entitled Renewable Energy Prospects: United States of America released this week on Monday 12th January. The report, which is part of IRENA’s ongoing REmap 2030 study, also says the US can increase its use of renewable energy in power generation from 14 percent to almost 50 percent by 2030, thereby making the country the world’s second largest renewable energy user after China.

“As the second largest energy consumer in the world, the US must continue to play a leading role in the global transition to a sustainable energy future” said Adnan Z. Amin, Director-General of IRENA. “The recent agreement between the US and China to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is a ground-breaking step, but this report aims even higher, showing that more can be done at limited cost.”

Current policies in place in the US would only enable the share of renewable energy to reach 10 percent by 2030. REmap 2030 estimates that an annual investment of $86 billion would be required between now and 2030 to enable this figure to rise to 27 percent, an increase of $38 billion annually beyond business-as-usual. The higher renewable share will result in annual savings of $30 billion to $140 billion by 2030 when accounting for factors such as human health and reduced emissions.

REmap 2030 shows that the US could install significantly higher amounts of renewables – and that it can do so affordably” added Mr. Amin. “Even in a country with cheap shale gas like the US, renewable energy is still cost competitive and reduces air pollution, enhances energy security, benefits the economy, and plays a leading role in fighting climate change.”

REmap 2030 outlines a plan to double the share of renewable energy in the world’s energy mix by 2030 while also assessing the potential for the US and other countries to scale up renewable energy in the energy system, including power, industry, buildings, and the transport sector. According to Dolf Gielen, Director of IRENA’s Innovation and Technology Centre, the report joins a number of studies that show the increasing cost competitiveness and potential of renewable energy in the US, particularly with regard to buildings, industry and transport sectors.

Next week, efforts to scale up global renewable energy expansion continue as government leaders from more than 150 countries and representatives from 110 international organisations gather in Abu Dhabi for IRENA’s fifth Assembly.

For additional information:

International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA)

Remap 2030

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