Renewable Energy Now and in the Future

Renewable energy has emerged as the most efficient and environment-friendly option to address energy security concerns and meet future global energy demands.


When we consider the diverse range of life forms that surround us, it is clear that the Earth, as its only sustainer, has to accept them all. When resources are used effectively, our planet has the capability to meet the food and shelter needs of every living being.

Humans, born with enhanced mental abilities, have resourcefully utilized natural resources in various ways to meet the increasing demands of an expanding population. This attempt unintentionally reduces the core niche of other life forms. Currently, the global ecological footprint stands at 1.75, indicating that the world population requires 1.75 Earths to survive.

Loss of biodiversity, deterioration of habitats, and climate change are already serious environmental problems, and human interference has put even more strain on these resources. These challenges are essentially related to global energy generation and consumption. 

Using renewable resources to produce green energy provides novel answers to major environmental concerns. The broad adoption of renewable resources, notably wind, sunlight, water, and geothermal sources, will determine the course of energy evolution. Collective global efforts to wisely utilize these natural resources hold the key to protecting Earth's greenery, efficiently bridging energy gaps, and fulfilling growing demands.

(Renewable energy outlook by statista)

Future Landscape of Renewable Energy
According to the World Energy Outlook 2022, a detailed analysis and projection research published by the International Energy Agency (IEA), we are in the early stages of a worldwide energy crisis. Soaring gas, oil, and coal costs account for more than 90% of the increase in worldwide electricity prices. This energy crisis highlights the unsustainable nature of today's unstable energy system, which is primarily reliant on nonrenewable resources.

“According to the 
IEA research, the energy crisis has increased the installation and use of solar photovoltaic cells and wind energy, a trend that is projected to continue in the future years.”

These renewable sources are crucial for decreasing pollution, producing clean energy, and addressing energy security concerns. Furthermore, the generated energy is expected to be more affordable and accessible. Harnessing the vast potential of solar, wind, and hydropower can move the energy economy ahead.

The IEA analysis also suggested that there has been a clear change in investment towards clean energy over fossil fuels, with clean energy investments doubled in 2023. Further, it stated that the energy crisis caused by the Russia-Ukraine war has already resulted in a 40% increase in renewable capacity in Europe by 2024. Increased regulatory backing and low-cost installation in countries such as Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands have made small-scale rooftop solar photovoltaics (PV) possible in the future. By 2030, it is expected that over 100 million households worldwide will rely on rooftop solar PV.

“According to the IEA, hydropower is expected to provide around 5,500 TWh of electricity per year from 2023–2030, with an average annual generation growth rate of almost 4%.  However, according to Ember, global hydropower generation fell 8.5% in the year leading up to June 2023, which is more than any full-year decline in the last 20 years.”

Wind energy
, harvested through turbines in windmills, is the second-largest renewable energy source. 

“According to 
Ember, global wind and solar generation increased 12% in the first half of 2023, reaching 1,930 terawatt hours (TWh). In 2023, wind output surpassed 500 TWh for the first time, with EU27 nations, Great Britain, and Norway generating about 545 TWh.”

In 2023, wind and solar power reached a record 12% of global electricity generation, which increased the overall share of low-carbon electricity to almost 40% of total generation. 

Geothermal power
 plants use heat from the earth's core to generate electricity or for direct use through heat pumps. According to the International Energy Agency's 2021 Annual Report, the direct use of geothermal energy has overtaken electricity generation globally. The United States remains the world leader in installed geothermal capacity, accounting for more than 25% of total operational capacity.

Nations worldwide that take on green energy policies are accelerating the fight for energy independence and economic growth. A promising economic assistance plan includes around US$108 billion for clean energy and $470 billion in energy-related packages, which are ready for investment by individual countries.

The IEA predicts a significant increase in solar PV and wind power installation this year, driven by growing policy impetus, rising fossil fuel prices, and worries about energy security. The predicted growth is estimated to match the combined power output of China and the United States, bringing the total worldwide capacity for renewable electricity to 4,500 GW.

Renewable energy sources are abundant and can be efficiently utilized with the right technology. The need of the hour now is to widely deploy renewable energy resources, increase green energy generation capacity, and thereby battle climate change while striving for net-zero emissions. Green energy is not only environmentally benign, but it is also cost-effective, creates jobs, and has the potential to revolutionize sustainable energy systems.

Written By:

Rupali Kushwaha

Rupali Kushwaha is a content writer who has written about health, sports, education, the environment, and technology. She has a Master of English from IGNOU and an ongoing Master of Business Administration from Jain University. She is looking forward to continue her contributions to the writing community.

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