The Ocean Energy OE Buoy in Galway Bay, Ireland, is designed around the oscillating water column principle. Its turbine captures the energy of the wave and the generator converts this energy to electrical power. A full-scale commercial prototype will have a capacity rating of 1.75 MW. Source: Ocean Energy Limited.
Revolutionizing our energy system to stay below 2°C warming by 2100 will also require rapid deployment of renewable and low-carbon energy sources at sufficient scale to power our energy needs. Accelerating the timeline for the needed transition will take a focused effort and considerable political will. Currently, renewable energy sources supply only 14% of global primary energy, or 26% of global electricity generation. However, renewable energy capacity growth has been growing steadily in recent years (IEA, 2019) – exponential rates of change such as in the solar and wind markets, if sustained, have short doubling times. National or state goals are altering the rate of renewable energy sources being deployed. In some cases more aggressive goals are being set than those required by the participating parties of the Paris Accord. For example, California is working toward ambitious short- and long-term goals for carbon emission reduction more in step with the reductions required to stabilize the climate.
Global energy consumption increased by 2.9% in 2018. Growth was the strongest since 2010 and almost double the 10-year average. The demand for all fuels increased but growth was particularly strong in the case of gas (1,954 TWh equivalen, accounting for 43% of the global increase) and renewables (826 TWh, 18% of the global increase). In the OECD, energy demand increased by 954 TWh on the back of strong gas demand growth (814 TWh). In the non-OECD, energy demand growth (3,582 TWh) was more evenly distributed with gas (1,140 TWh), coal (989 TWh) and oil (547 TWh) accounting for most of the growth (BP Statistical Review of World Energy 2019). Graphic source: Our World in Data 2020.