An impending end to fossil age due to Renewable age records

Record-breaking renewable energy production means the world is about to enter an era of fossil fuel decline, according to a new report.

Figures from UK-based energy think tank Ember, published on Wednesday, found that wind and solar supplied a record 12 per cent of global electricity in 2022.

Combined with nuclear and hydropower, clean energy sources accounted for 39 per cent of global electricity last year.

Ember’s fourth annual Global Electricity Review also projected that current clean energy trends could mean 2022 was the year that power sector emissions peaked.

“In this decisive decade for the climate, it is the beginning of the end of the fossil age,” said Małgorzata Wiatros-Motyka, a senior electricity analyst at Ember.

“We are entering the clean power era. The stage is set for wind and solar to achieve a meteoric rise to the top. Clean electricity will reshape the global economy, from transport to industry and beyond.

“Change is coming fast. However, it all depends on the actions taken now by governments, businesses and citizens to put the world on a pathway to clean power by 2040.

The report drew on data from 78 countries representing 93 per cent of global electricity demand, with China’s booming renewable energy sector the largest contributing factor to phasing out coal, oil and gas in the global electricity sector.

Electricity is currently the highest emitting sector of CO2, so an efficient transition to clean alternatives is crucial to achieving net zero targets.

To meet these, wind and solar need to have increased to 41 per cent of global electricity generation by 2030, while coal generation needs to fall by 54 per cent and gas generation by 24 per cent.

Electricity demand continues to grow rapidly, though a report from Ember last year found that clean energy sources are already meeting this increased demand.

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