IGA partner institution REN21 celebrates 10 years of Renewables

The IGA collaborates with REN21 and joins in their celebration of their 10 years of renewable energy policy research.

More than 180 energy experts from over 40 different countries meet in Bonn 10-12 November, 2014 to debate how to advance the global energy transition with renewables.


Ten years on from renewables2004—the world’s first government-hosted international conference on renewable energy—REN21 celebrates a decade of promoting renewables with its REN21 Renewables Academy.

Designed around its international network of renewable energy experts, the Renewables Academy is for REN21’s experts to debate how to advance the global energy transition using renewables.

Sessions over the two and half days include: how to achieve a 100% renewable future, debunking myths about renewables in the media, how to remove fossil fuel subsidies, the role of community power, and the use of renewables to increase energy access.


During the Renewables Academy, two reports will be launched:


The First Decade: 2004-2014 documents the evolution of renewables since 2004, measuring progress by technology and by region, ending with a look at lessons learnt and offering a vision for the future. Since 2004, the number of countries promoting renewable energy with direct policy support has nearly tripled, from 48 to over 140, and an ever-increasing number of developing and emerging countries are setting renewable energy targets and enacting support policies. The last decade (2004–2014) saw a steady increase in the global demand for renewable energy. While overall primary energy supply from renewables in 2004 was 57.7 EJ per year, by 2013 the total supply had grown to 76 EJ annually—an overall increase of 30%.


Total renewable power capacity—excluding large hydro—saw a sevenfold increase during the past decade; from 85 GW in 2004 to 560 GW by the end of 2013. Including hydropower, renewables power capacity doubled from 800 GW to 1560 GW. Wind power saw a significant increase moving from a total installed capacity of 48 GW in 2004 to 318 GW in 2014. Solar photovoltaic (PV) power generation grew by a factor of 70, from 2.6 GW to 139GW.


Global investment in renewables amounts to a total of USD 1.6 trillion from 2004-2013 despite declines in annual investment in both 2012 and 2013. As solar, wind, biomass, and other energy sources gain market share, the levelised cost of energy (LCOE) is becoming an important metric in the decision-making process for building new power generation. Strong policy signals from governments are essential to ensure that renewables are a central component of national energy supply chains. Scenarios ranging from the International Energy Agency to Greenpeace illustrate that by 2050, 65-94% of electricity and 30-72% of transport are likely to be met by renewables.


The ECOWAS Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Status Report provides a regional perspective on the renewable energy and energy efficiency market and industry development in West Africa.  Produced in cooperation with ECREEE, the report concludes that renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies have rapidly become cost effective solutions for overcoming the diverse array of energy challenges currently facing the 15-country region.


“REN21‘s network—with over 500 contributors from 80 countries—is central to the organisation’s work.  The network has collaborated with the Secretariat throughout the last decade to accurately tell the exciting story of renewable energy development globally,” says Christine Lins, Executive Secretary of REN21. “Today, renewables are mainstreamed; however, despite the advancements achieved over the last decade, it is clear that we need to move faster and more deliberately if we are serious about doubling the global share of renewables by 2030 and about ensuring access to clean and sustainable energy for all in the same time period. The REN21 Renewables Academy coincides with the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin wall. The time is ripe to get rid of the walls blocking a global energy transition and advance with renewables and energy efficiency now.”


The Renewables Academy is made possible with support from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development.


Reports available at: