China’s power generation growth accelerated in 2021.
Strong recovery in global power generation in 2021, after the 2020 slight decrease.
After a 0.3% decline due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, global power generation rebounded by +5.5% in 2021, above its 2010-2019 average growth (2.5%/year) and exceeding its 2019 level by 5.2%. Thermal power generation (64% of the global power mix in 2021) strongly recovered in 2021(+5.7%), while wind and solar generation continued to rise at a steady pace (+16% and +23%, respectively). The growth in global power generation was pulled by BRICS countries (+8.5% in 2021, 10% above their 2019 level), where electricity consumption grew noticeably, especially in China (+9.7%), India (+4.8%), Russia (+6.4%) and in Brazil (+9.5%); in China, most of the increase in power generation came from coal, wind and solar. In both Europe and the USA, where power generation had been stagnating between 2010 and 2019 before dipping by 3% in 2020, the economic recovery spurred power generation. In Europe, power generation increased by 3.6% and returned to its 2019 level, rebounding in Poland, France and Germany and accelerating in Turkey. In the USA, power generation grew by 2.7% (back to its 2019 level). This higher power production in Europe and the USA was exceptionally supported by a rising coal-fired generation, in a context of soaring gas prices, and by a strong growth in renewable power generation (despite a lower wind generation in the EU, which was more than offset by an improved nuclear availability). In Asia-Pacific, power generation increased in most countries, with steady growths in Indonesia or South Korea), whereas it slightly declined in Japan (-0.7%) and stagnated in Thailand and in Australia. It recovered in Brazil (+9.5%), Mexico, and South Africa.
An in-depth analysis of the past year’s key figures, with projections related to the current context (post-pandemic rebound and the energy crisis due to the war in Ukraine).Download the publication
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