Steady growth in CO2 emissions in China in 2019.
In 2019, CO2 emissions from fuel combustion slightly decreased (-0.2%) following two years of growth, thanks to a significant improvement in energy intensity (-2.1% in 2019) and to a strong decline of the CO2 emissions per kWh produced (-3.2%, or 443 gCO2/kWh) mainly due to fuel switching from coal to gas and the rising share of renewables in the global power mix.
Most of the reduction in emissions occurred in the USA (-2.4%) and Europe (-3.9%, with significant cuts in Germany, Poland, the UK, Spain and Turkey), resulting from a lower energy demand (in particular in the power sector) due to a slower economic growth, mild temperatures, and fuel substitutions in the power sector (coal-to-gas switching and renewable growth).
In Asia, CO2 emissions grew again, though at a slower pace than in recent years. Emissions rose for the third year in a row in China (+2.8%), where the coal-to-gas conversion policy was relaxed and continue their steady growth in Indonesia. On the contrary, emissions declined in India (higher hydropower generation reducing coal consumption), South Korea (temporary shutdowns of coal-fired power plants and shift from coal to LNG) and Japan (lower electricity consumption and improved nuclear availability cutting thermal power generation).
CO2 emissions also continued to increase in coal and hydrocarbon producing countries, such as Russia, Australia, Iran, South Africa or Algeria.
According to the Spanish wind association Asociación Empresarial Eólica (AEE), Spain’s installed wind capacity increased by 1,720 MW in 2020 and reached 27,446 MW at the end of 2020. In 2020, the autonomous communities with the largest wind capacity additions were Aragón (+1,051 MW to 4,159 MW), followed by Navarra (+263 MW to 1,302 MW), Castilla y León (+216 MW to 6,300 MW), Castilla La Mancha (+65 MW to 3,885 MW), Canary Islands (+29 MW to 450 MW), Andalusia (+24 MW to 3,478 MW) and Galicia (+24 MW to 3,829 MW). In total, there are 1,267 wind farms in Spain, with 21,431 installed wind turbines and wind power accounted for 21.9% of the electricity consumed in 2020.
According to the French Renewable Energy Association, France’s installed renewable capacity, including hydropower, increased by more than 2 GW in 2020 (+1,105 MW of wind and +820 MW of solar) and reached 55.9 GW at the end of 2020. Hydropower capacity accounting for over half of the capacity, with 25.7 GW, followed by wind (17.6 GW), solar (10.4 GW) and bio-energies (2.2 GW). Renewable accounted for 26.9% of electricity consumption in mainland France in 2020, compared to 23.1% in 2019. This increase is due to a higher renewable production of 120.7 TWh (+10.4% compared to 2019) and to a lower electricity consumption due to the public health situation.
According to the Brazilian wind association ABEEólica, Brazil had 17.7 GW of installed wind capacity at the end of 2020 (up from 928 MW at the end of 2010), with 695 wind power plants and more than 8,300 wind turbines. In 2020, Brazil installed nearly 2.3 GW of wind capacity. Most of Brazil’s installed wind capacity is located in Nordeste, with, most notably, 5.2 GW in Rio Grande do Norte, 4.9 GW in Bahia, 2.3 GW in Piauí and 2.2 GW in Ceará.
ABEEólica expects the Brazilian wind capacity to increase by nearly 11 GW by 2024, when it should reach 28.7 GW.
According to the Irish wind association Wind Energy Ireland, wind power generation increased by 13% to over 10.7 TWh in 2020 and accounted for 36.3% of electricity demand in Ireland. Eight new wind plants were connected with a combined capacity of 135 MW, raising the installed wind capacity to 4,255 MW at the end of 2020. In addition, the authorities confirmed planning permissions for seven new wind power plants with a total capacity of 307 MW.