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Renewable energy transition

It is difficult for gas to compete in a world of very cheap coal, falling costs and continued policy support of renewables.

The growth of gas in the power sector was being suppressed by cheap coal and growth in renewables.

Countries in Asia (Northeast Asia (except Japan), Southeast Asia, and South Asia) are turning to coal. Power companies in India and elsewhere in Asia are turning back to coal because it is cheap and domestically sourced. Asian power companies are building more than 500 coal-fired power plants this year alone. And more than a thousand are on the drawing board.

Renewable energy currently contributes 27 percent to gross electricity consumption in Germany, compared to 13 percent in the United States. Germany seems on track to reduce the country’s greenhouse gas emissions to 40 percent of 1990 levels by 2020, even while phasing out nuclear power by 2022.

The main driver of Germany’s renewable energy success is a set of legislation collectively called the Energiewende, or energy transition. Launched in the 1990s, the goal of the Energiewende is not just to combat climate change but also to guarantee competitiveness and growth.

The production of new and renewable energy in the US is continuously increasing. According to the US Department of Energy, a third of new power generation will come from new and renewable energy within 3 years and, including solar, wind and geothermal energy will reach 17,000 MW. Solar energy production itself increased a whopping 418 percent from 2012 to 2014 to 12,000 MW.

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This article is from the free online course:

Global Resource Politics: the Past, Present and Future of Oil, Gas and Shale

Hanyang University