Renewable energy will displace coal as the world’s top source of power by 2040, according to a new report by BP.
Wind, solar and other renewables currently accounts for about 10% of the world’s electricity supplies, the UK-based oil company estimates. To put that into perspective, oil took almost 45 years to go from 1% of global energy to 10%, and gas took more than 50 years, the Guardian reports.
The growth of renewables is set to kick over the next two decades. By 2040, the global percentage will reach 30%, BP said in its annual energy outlook, up from 25% from its report 12 months ago.
However, the shift toward renewables won’t stave off the effects of global warming, the report warns. BP’s ‘central scenario’ projects carbon emissions to grow 10% over the next 20 years, with the world energy demand showing no signs of decreasing.
Fossil fuels will continue to play a key role in meeting demand, BP says. It expects global demand for oil and gas to be 80-130 million barrels per day by 2040, up from around 100mb/d today.
Meanwhile, fossil fuel giants continue to reward workforces based on the amount they produce. A report by CarbonTracker found that 92% of 40 oil and gas firms work this way. BP is said to be considering introducing a form of executive remuneration based on carbon emission cuts.
Renewables are making ground on their fossil fuel alternatives regardless. They are expected to grow by 7.1% each year over the next 20 years, knocking coal off the top spot as the world’s biggest source of power by 2040.
“The pace at which renewable energy penetrates the global energy system is faster than for any fuel in history,” the report states.
This penetration will continue to be driven by government policies, technological change and the falling costs of wind and solar power, BP stated.
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