10 Countries Leading the Renewables Race (A list considering multiple factors and it features the United Kingdom!)
Nations worldwide are powering towards a net zero future by deploying renewable energy sources on a mass scale. Innovation, ambition and a shared goal towards a greener society have earnt the nations below poling positions. These aren’t necessarily empirical on every measure, but some interesting countries with interesting renewable approaches.
Renewable energy accounted for 49% of power consumption in 2022, Germany leads innovations in residential battery storage solutions, with 120,000 households powered by solar combined with battery storage. By 2050, Germany aims to source 80% of their electricity from renewable sources.
Setting the record for most days powered by renewables (300), 99% of the energy in Costa Rica comes from renewable sources. Interestingly, solar panels comprise only 0.8% of generation! Costarriqueños will ban all fossil fuels and become the world’s first decarbonised country.
Driven by market-leading technologies, falling costs and governmental support, the UK has 11,000 wind turbines in operation, producing 25% of the Brits’s electricity needs. A new report by Solar Energy UK estimates growth in UK solar has more than doubled in the last 12 months, a trend set to continue.
Denmark is a laboratory for green solutions, in the past 40 years Denmark’s economy has grown almost 80%, while energy consumption remains unchanged. By 2030, Denmark strives for an electricity system completely independent from fossil fuels.
Renewable energy in Kenya currently accounts for 73% of the installed capacity, on their way to achieving 100% of clean energy use by 2030. Kenya is betting big on wind, with Africa’s largest wind farm connected to the grid set to provide 20% of the country’s installed electricity capacity.
Brazil has a well-developed renewables sector that represents more than 39% of the overall internal energy supply. Brazil is rare in that it lacks legislative targets for increasing renewables but has committed to expand non-hydro renewables to 20% of electricity supply by 2030.
Not only does China lead the manufacture of wind and solar, but the nation sources 28% of its grid from renewable energy sources. With their sights set on space, Chinese scientists are exploring the possibility of installing space-based solar power stations, orbiting 22,370 miles above earth.
Currently 75% of electricity production in Sweden comes from hydroelectric and nuclear power. Looking ahead, Sweden has set out to meet 100% of its electricity needs from renewable sources by 2040.
La Celeste now generates over 98% of all electricity from hydropower, wind, biomass and solar. Uruguay is seeking to identify additional domestic uses for the excess electricity and increase exports to neighbouring Argentina and Brazil.
Morocco hosts to the world’s largest solar power plant. Their sustainably-minded policymakers have phased out fossil fuel subsidies and targeted 80% renewable energy by 2050 with technological evolutions in energy storage, green hydrogen, and decreasing energy costs.
Across these nations we find cohesive elements acting as driving forces for major eco-infrastructure projects. Ambitious target-setting, sustainably-minded regulatory environments, and a strong partnerships between public/private sectors are key to leading the global race to net zero.