Renewables’ contribution to energy production has risen to 22.3% if one considers the share of electric energy alone


The International Energy Agency, i.e. IEA has once again reported on the contribution made by renewable energy sources to the world energy demand. The expected prospect is a long-term one (the data registered is from 1990 to 2014, while 2015 data is an estimate) and bound to the rise; from the beginning of the 1990s the energy produced worldwide by renewable sources has increased at an annual average rate of 2,2%, i.e. a rate higher than the one registered for primary energy demand (Tpes, total primary energy saving), which has grown by 1.9% yearly.

Despite what might be possibly appreciated, in the OECD countries energy from renewable sources makes up for 9.4% of the entire primary energy demand. Conversely, it is in non-OECD countries that ¾ of all forms of energy from renewable sources are concentrated. These mainly consist in solid biomasses like charcoal or firewood, which are mostly used in the rural areas of Africa (with 49.6% of the energy used coming from renewable sources) and America and Asia, where they are used for heating or cooking purposes.

This is an ancestral practice of energy production, which is certainly not the most efficient one, which however makes up for 66.2% of all primary energy production from renewable sources. Hydroelectric energy still ranks second, making up for 2.4% of Tpes (and representing 17.7% of energy from renewable sources and 73.2% if one considers electrical energy alone).

On the other hand, over the last fifteen years the increase in renewables has reached a peak in some of its more modern forms. If the average growth rate has been 2.2% annually, as was said, the photovoltaic sector – which was driven OECD countries and China – has made a huge leap forward registering a + 46% every year, followed by wind energy (+24.3%).