As the world pivots during the shift from fossil-fuel-based energy sources to more sustainable sources, many are wondering how the landscape of the global energy mix will look in the future. According to a report by Thompson Reuters, Powering the Planet 2045, solar PV, hydro power, and nuclear fusion will be the major players.
The report highlights the undeniable fact that fossil-fuel-based energy sources will be all but gone by the end of this century, so poses the question of which sources we can draw upon to fill the gap. It accepts that clean coal and natural gas will remain important in the near-term, but that over the next three decades solar PV, hydro power, and nuclear fusion will take up the mantel as the biggest global energy sources, citing innovation in these industries as one of the major driving forces.
Rapid alternative-energy innovation, the transformative effect of disruptive technology and climate change will have major impacts on our customers and their businesses in the coming decades, commented Mark Schlageter, chief customer officer for Thompson Reuters. These trends will reverberate across established and emerging markets as populations shift and markets fluctuate.
PV primed to take a bigger chunk
It is in emerging markets that solar PV is currently experiencing particularly encouraging growth. New markets in Asia, Latin America, and Africa were recently highlighted by Ernst & Young as places that are becoming much more attractive for renewable energy investment, as new policies are being introduced to take advantage of the often plentiful renewable resources.
Two countries that are taking huge strides in terms of solar PV investment are China and India, as both countries look to harness PV to reach their ambitious carbon emissions targets. India alone is hoping to reach an incredible 100 GW of installed PV capacity by 2022.
The Reuters report also highlighted the top solar innovators for solar cell materials and for other solar PV components, with Japanese companies Sharp and Mitsubishi featuring in the top three of both lists. The increased technological advancements within the PV industry, coupled with the drive for increased PV investment and capacity installations has put the industry in a good position to take a big chunk of the worlds future energy mix.