The renewables industry is growing year on year and at a rate that has never been seen before. It has now been said that by 2040, renewables will be the main supply of power to the world!
It has been estimated that up to 30% of power will come from clean sources such as wind, solar, and hydro along with other sources. Currently, the 10% supplied by renewables, is set to dramatically rise. The speed at which the industry has grown far exceeds that of any other historical changes. This growth is thanks to the need for cleaner power due to government and environmental targets. The costs of wind and solar have also fallen thanks to new technologies and are now much more affordable to produce than they once were.
One of the main renewables used is wind; offshore and onshore wind is used all over the world. In the UK, offshore wind farms are extremely effective, and the use of offshore wind is set to increase by 2030. Currently offshore wind provides around 7% of UK power which is expected to rise to up to 30% in the coming years.
Although the use of renewables is set to rise, so is the demand for energy. As demand rises so will the demand for oil and gas. While the ultimate plan is to retie the use of fossil fuels for good, that doesn’t look likely any time soon. BP say they expect the demand to rise by 2040 from 100million barrels a day to 130million barrels a day and carbon emissions are expected to grow as well – as much as 10%!
There is positive change happening too, however. Coal will be phased out in favour of renewables by 2040, taking over as the leader for energy production. It is hoped that the introduction of more electric vehicles will lower emissions in the transport sector which is where a lot of the worlds emissions come from.
The government has backed a new deal which will boost the development of renewables, pledging subsidies to new projects such as offshore wind, floating solar and bigger wind turbines. Renewables will continue to drive forward and replace fossil fuels, but it will be no easy task. Energy minister, Claire Perry, is positive about the future of renewables. She said:
“This new sector deal will drive a surge in the clean, green offshore wind revolution that is powering homes and businesses across the UK, bringing investment into coastal communities and ensuring we maintain our position as global leaders in this growing sector,”
There are many other ways the world could cut the use of gas and oil. No longer using single use plastics could cut the demand for oil and gas significantly, as could the use of electric cars. It is estimated that the use of electric cars alone could cut oil consumption by 3.5million barrels a day. The switch to EVS is a slow process and technology still has a long way to go with price and battery life still being in need of work.
John Sauven, executive director of Greenpeace UK said:
“Renewable power now presents the best opportunity for cheaper, cleaner and faster decarbonisation. Wind and solar must be tripled between now and 2030, with offshore wind the future backbone of the UK’s energy system.”