A massive increase in the deployment of wind, solar and battery storage over the next decade is essential if the world is to meet its goal of reaching net zero emissions by 2050 – the key to meeting the goals of the Paris climate target.
BloombergNEF says in its latest New Energy Outlook that more than three quarters of the effort to cut emissions in the next nine years falls to the power sector, and to the faster deployment of wind and solar PV in particular.
The numbers are mind boggling. Deployment of wind power need to increase by more than five times the 2020 total to more than 500 gigawatts a year out to 2030, solar PV needs to treble to 455GW a year, while battery storage needs to increase 26 times to 245GWh a year.
Other technologies are also needed. Electric vehicles need to increase 11-fold to 35 million vehicles a year, sustainable aviation fuels need to make up 18 per cent of aircraft fuel by 2030, recycling of aluminum and plastics need to double, and 18 million heat pumps will be needed each year.
And, of course, fossil fuel generation needs to reduce dramatically. Coal-fired power needs to be by 72 per cent from 2019 by 2030, requiring the retirement of 1,417GW of coal generators by 2030.
BNEF did not supply detailed estimated costings for the scenarios, other than noting that the total cost of the energy transition will be somewhere between $US92 and $US173 trillion.