wind farm

Global wind power has the potential to generate up to 20% of the world’s electricity needs by 2030, according to the Global Wind Energy Council’s biennial Global Wind Energy Outlook.

The report highlighted that by 2030 wind power could reach 2,110GW, and supply up to 20% of global electricity, creating 2.4 million new jobs and reducing CO2 emissions by more than 3.3 billion tonnes per year, and attract annual investment of about €200 billion ($217 billion).

The report looks at four scenarios exploring the future of the wind industry out to 2020, 2030 and 2050, the GWEC said in a statement.

Increased wind power to drive economies

The Secretary General of the Council, Steve Sawyer, said in a statement: “Now that the Paris Agreement is coming into force, countries need to get serious about what they committed to last December. Meeting the Paris targets means a completely decarbonised electricity supply well before 2050, and wind power will play the major role in getting us there.”

Africa, Latin America and Asia have seen growing renewables markets during the last few years and are promising areas for sustainability and an energetic transition, the GWEC added.

Sawyer added: “Wind power is the most competitive option for adding new capacity to the grid in a growing number of markets … but if the Paris agreement targets are to be reached, that means closing fossil fuel fired power plants and replacing them with wind, solar, hydro, geothermal and biomass.

“That will be the hard part, and governments will have to get serious about it if they are to live up to the commitments to which they have now bound themselves.”

Lead analyst of the report, Sven Teske, research principal for the Institute for Sustainable Futures at the University of Technology Sydney, said: “Decarbonising the global energy system includes the transport sector as a major emitter of carbon.”

Teske continued: “The market for electric mobility, both in regard to electric vehicles as well as public transport, will continue to grow significantly and with this electricity demand for the transport sector.”

He added: “Wind power is in a pole position to supply this future power demand making the wind industry one of the key industries of the energy sector.”

Download the full Global Wind Energy Outlook 2016 report.