October 28, 2020 Read More →

Bloomberg report charts acceleration of global energy transition

S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):

Depressed in 2020 by the worldwide economic slowdown brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, global carbon dioxide emissions from power, transportation, industry and buildings peaked in 2019 at 31.9 gigatons of CO2 equivalent, according to an Oct. 27 report from BloombergNEF.

After dropping 8.6% in 2020, emissions will again tick upward through 2027, but will remain below 2019’s level and then decline roughly 0.7% per year through 2050, the clean energy research firm said in its 2020 New Energy Outlook.

In the global power sector, the COVID-19 crisis “has brought forward a triple peak” of both coal use and emissions, in 2018, and natural gas in 2019, according to the report. The analysis predicts that global oil demand will peak in 2035.

Wind and solar energy, on the other hand, will continue to gather momentum, rising to 56% of global power generation by 2050, up from 9% in 2020, BloombergNEF, or BNEF, added. Over the next 30 years, wind, solar and battery storage together will seize an 80% share of $15.1 trillion to be invested in power capacity, according to the report, which forecasts an additional $14 trillion in power grid outlays to 2050.

“Our projections for the power system have become even more bullish for renewables than in previous years, based purely on cost dynamics,” said Seb Henbest, BNEF’s chief economist and lead author of the report, in a news release. The report also highlights the “tremendous opportunity” for direct electrification and green hydrogen to help decarbonize transport, buildings and industry, Henbest said.

Natural gas, fueled by building and industrial demand, is the only fossil fuel forecast to continue growing to 2050 in the report.

[Garrett Hering]

More ($): Global emissions peaked in 2019 as pandemic hastens energy transition – report

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