COVID-19 brought a significant decline in energy generation using fossil fuel, while renewable power gained new momentum.
In a poll Verdict has conducted to assess whether COVID-19 acted as a catalyst for carbon reduction by paving the way for future renewable energy usage, a majority 59% opined that it did, including 27% who strongly agreed to the same and 32% who agreed.
On the contrary, 22% of the respondents did not agree with the notion that COVID-19 acted as a catalyst, including 12% who disagreed and 10% who strongly disagreed.
Further, 19% of the respondents neither agreed nor disagreed with the statement that COVID-19 acted as a catalyst for carbon reduction by paving the way for future renewable energy usage.
The analysis is based on 248 responses received from the readers of Power Technology, a Verdict network site, between 18 November 2020 and 17 March 2021.
Impact of COVID-19 on future renewable energy usage
The lockdown restrictions implemented due to the COVID-19 pandemic led to an 8% decline in energy-related emissions and 6% decline in energy demand, which in turn led to an increase in renewables share in electricity generation. Renewable energy consumption in the US increased by 40% and by 45% in India during the first ten weeks of lockdown.
Global renewable energy generation rose by 3%, primarily driven by new solar and wind projects that came online in the last year. Further, 13 countries awarded new renewable capacity addition of approximately 50GW in the first half of 2020 despite the pandemic.
Stringent environmental regulations, growing investors’ sentiment for renewable power built upon slowdown in energy demand and fall in oil prices during the pandemic have been critical for promoting the growth of renewable energy.