World moving to green power, invests $2.9trn

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Generic view of a solar power plant by Superblock, Southeast Asia's biggest producer of solar power is pictured in Phetchaburi province, Thailand, August 23, 2017. REUTERS/Athit Perawongmetha

The world is steadily moving to ‘green’ power sources as it invested $2.9 trillion in green energy sources since 2004.

A new UN-backed report on Global Trends in Renewable Energy Investment 2018 was released on Thursday by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and its partners.

The report indicates a steady move away from fossil fuel-based power production and that solar energy dominated global investment in new power generation like never before in 2017.

It added that 2017 was the eighth in a row in which global investment in renewables exceeded 200 billion dollars – and

“In 2017, the world installed a record 98 gigawatts of new solar capacity, far more than the net additions of the rest – other renewable, fossil fuel and nuclear”, according to the report.

The report added that solar power also attracted far more investment than any other technology, at 160.8 billion dollars, up 18 per cent.

A driving power behind last year’s surge in solar was China, where an unprecedented boom saw some 53 gigawatts added – more than half the global total – and 86.5 billion dollars invested, up 58 per cent.

Solar plant

“The extraordinary surge in solar investment shows how the global energy map is changing and, more importantly, what the economic benefits are of such a shift.

“Investments in renewables bring more people into the economy, they deliver more jobs, better quality jobs and better paid jobs.

“Clean energy also means less pollution, which means healthier, happier development,” UNEP chief Erik Solheim, said.

It said 2017 was the eighth in a row in which global investment in renewables exceeded 200 billion dollars – and since 2004, the world had invested 2.9 trillion dollars in these green energy sources.

Overall, China was by far the world’s largest investing country in renewables, at a record 126.6 billion dollars, up 31 per cent on 2016.

There were also sharp increases in investment in Australia, up 147 per cent to 8.5 billion dollars; Mexico, up 810 per cent to six billion dollars; and Sweden, up 127 per cent to 3.7 billion dollars. (NAN)

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