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Renewable energy as a new economic force

Myth

Renewable energy will not play a major role in the next decades. It is high-priced, inefficient and economically not a relevant factor.

Facts

Renewables have emerged from their niche: Since 2013 more renewable energy production capacity has been installed annually than fossil and nuclear energy combined. In addition renewable energy provides value creation and jobs.

Renewable energy overtakes fossils.

Annual increase in global electricity production capacity in gigawatts

  • conventional energy
  • renewable energy

Source: WWF, Lichtblick: Megatrends der globalen Energiewende, 2015

The rate of installation of renewable energy sources is gathering momentum – especially in the electricity market. In 2014 the capacity of all newly installed power plants amount to 59 per cent of renewable sources. Since 2013 (58 per cent) the renewable sector has outpaced fossil and nuclear energy. Its economic relevance is increasing. The rapid development can be seen from the example of wind and solar power: Within a decade the installed capacity of wind power increased eightfold (2004: 48 GW, 2014: 370 GW). Within the same period the installed capacity of solar power plants increased fifty-fold (2004: 3.7 GW, 2014: 177 GW). Globally around 7.7 million people are working in the renewable energy sector. The importance of the domestic market is relevant especially for innovative Austrian businesses in the renewable energy sector.