Wind could be the source of 15-18% of all the world’s power by 2050 if the right actions are taken, according to a new report from the International Energy Agency (IEA).
It said advances in technology meant it had bumped up the 12% target previously made in its 2009 report.
The report found that with a capacity of nearly 300 GW, wind power is currently responsible for 2.6% of global generation.
The IEA said if its predictions were to come true capacity would have to increase eight to ten-fold, meaning $5.5-6.4 trillion (£3.4-3.96 tn) would need to be invested in wind power by 2050, with annual investment doubling from $75 billion (£46.4 bn) in 2012 to $150 billion (£92.8 bn). The report said doing so would save 4.8 gigatonnes of CO2 emissions per year by 2050.
The report also predicted China will overtake the OECD countries in Europe as the biggest wind power producer in 2020 to 2025, with the US taking the third spot.
The study identified the biggest obstacles to progress as problems with financing, grid integration, permits and public acceptance. It added improvements to grid infrastructure, the flexibility of power systems and the design of electricity markets were also needed to avoid reducing the reliability of supply.