The International Energy Agency (IEA) announced on Thursday that global investment in solar power is expected to overtake investment in oil production for the first time in 2023, marking a historic shift in the energy sector.Embed from Getty Images
According to the IEA’s World Energy Investment report, solar power investment will reach $380 billion in 2023, while oil exploration and extraction will amount to $370 billion. This reflects a 25% increase in clean energy spending compared to 2021, driven by high oil and gas prices and growing concerns about energy security and climate change.
The IEA’s executive director, Fatih Birol, said that solar power is “a true energy superpower” that is expanding faster than many people realize. He added that for every dollar invested in fossil fuels, about $1.7 are now going into clean energy, up from a one-to-one ratio five years ago.Embed from Getty Images
However, Birol also warned that investment in fossil fuels is still too high to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050, a goal that many countries have committed to under the Paris Agreement. He said that spending on upstream oil and gas is projected to grow by 7% in 2023, mainly due to some national oil companies in the Middle East investing more than they did before the pandemic.
The IEA also highlighted the uneven distribution of clean energy investment across the world, noting that advanced economies and China account for more than 90% of new investment in renewables. Birol said that this poses “a serious risk of new dividing lines in global energy if clean energy transitions don’t pick up elsewhere.”
The report comes as world leaders prepare to meet at the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow next month, where they are expected to announce new pledges and actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and limit global warming.
- Solar power investment overtakes oil for first time – DW | May 25, 2023
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- Solar power investment to outshine oil for first time: IEA – The Straits Times | May 25, 2023