The global power sector must develop “far-sighted policy frameworks” to anticipate the needs of the future energy system.
That’s the verdict from a new report published by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), which says innovation “holds the key to a cost-effective global energy transformation” and outlines a number of steps in which decarbonisation can be acheived.
The report calls for the sector to draw together innovations in technology, market design, business models and operation, as well as support learning through ongoing trials and demonstrations.
It stresses it is vital to account for changing roles and responsibilities in operating the power system as decentralised energy resources become increasingly common and new market players emerge.
The report calls for market design innovation to be made a priority, as it can boost flexibility at a relatively low cost and says an open and co-operative approach must be used to create synergies and improve efficiency.
IRENA warns decarbonising the global power sector in line with the Paris Agreement will require an 85% share of renewable energy by 2050 and argues the steps outlined are crucial for the massive scale-up of renewables power to be enabled in a cost-effective manner.
IRENA Director-General Adnan Z. Amin said: “Europe has shown tremendous leadership in initiating the system-wide innovations needed to support the widespread adoption of renewables and decarbonise the global economy.
“The region’s success shows us that innovation is creating an energy transformation that is technically feasible and economically attractive.”