Global investment in renewable energy infrastructure will double over the next 10 years, soaring to $395bn a year by 2020, according to a major new report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance
The report, entitled Global Renewable Energy Market Outlook
, also predicts that growth will be maintained throughout the 2020s, with annual investment in new capacity and retrofitting of existing infrastructure reaching $460bn by 2030.
Guy Turner, director of commodity market
research at BNEF, said that the surge in investment will prove a truly global phenomenon.
"One of the most startling statistics is that around 40 per cent of global power demand
will come outside the EU, North America and the BRIC [Brazil, Russia, India and China]
countries," he said.
"There is going to be huge growth in markets such as Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand, the Middle East, Africa and Latin America."
Turner said that the prospects for the sector after 2020 are even more encouraging as improvements in solar and wind energy technologies in particular should make renewable power cost competitive with fossil fuels.
"Once you get to post-2020 you start to get growth driven by raw economics rather than policies. Solar will continue to come down in price while better blades and energy storage will make onshore wind competitive at the same time as fossil fuel prices are likely to rise," he said.
"Then you will start to see a step change in renewable energy economics where it will make more sense for people to invest in clean energy."
These predictions are borne out in the report, which estimates that global solar energy capacity will rise from 51GW currently to 1,137GW in 2030, driven by $130bn a year of investment, while the wind energy sector will see investment increase from $82bn last year to $140bn in 2020 and $206bn in 2030.