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New era of solar power is now upon us, IEA says


Last year, new solar capacity around the world grew by 50 percent, reaching more than 74 gigawatts, with China accounting for nearly half of that expansion. As Bloomberg New Energy Finance founder Michael Liebreich pointed out in a recent presentation, actual renewables growth has for many years outpaced IEA's annual forecasts (check out pages 54-74 of this document). The price is half what new wind farms were built for just two years ago, and means off shore wind power will be cheaper than nuclear energy in the United Kingdom for the first time.

Buoyed by a 50% increase in solar capacity around the world, the International Energy Agency has raised its forecasts for renewable energy over the next five years. A good blend of renewable and traditional energy sources is needed. Around half of the global expansion was driven by China. The group's fifth annual energy report, America's Clean Energy Revolution, was published this week, confirming USA shattered dozens of clean energy records over the previous year and a half and proving that a massive shift is underway in America's energy landscape - from traditional fossil fuels and nuclear towards renewable energy sources like wind and solar.

Solar energy was the fastest-growing source of electric power a year ago, a new report said on Wednesday, amid the "birth of a new era" for the reneweable energy sector.

Renewable electricity generation is expected to expand by more than one-third by 2022, to more than 8 PWh - equivalent to.

In a Bloomberg News report, renewable energy in 2016 received $10.9 billion in tax preferences, compared with $4.6 billion for fossil fuels.


The report also provides detailed analysis on the renewable consumption of electric cars and off-grid solar deployment in Africa and developing Asia.

"We expect that solar PV capacity growth will be higher than any other renewable technology through 2022", he added. Though coal will still be the largest source of electricity generation in 2022, renewables cut that gap in half.

The influential Paris-based agency said its recent outlook for Canadian renewables was "less optimistic" than its 2016 projection due to "recent changes in auctions schemes in Ontario and Quebec".

There are worries that India's rock-bottom prices will make its solar industry non-viable in the future. Total solar PV capacity by then would exceed the combined total power capacities of India and Japan today, the IEA said.

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