The progress of renewables has sustained a major blow over the first half of 2019 as global investment in clean energy fell 14% compared with the same period last year, primarily due to China looking elsewhere for its power.

The economic capital of the east reduced its funding of renewable energy to less than $29bn over the six-month period, marking a cut back of 39% and the lowest figure it has recorded since 2013, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF).

Its head of Asia-Pacific Justin Wu said: “The slowdown in investment in China is real, but the figures for first-half 2019 probably overstate its severity.

“We expect a nationwide solar auction happening now to lead to a rush of new photovoltaic project financing.

“We could also see several big deals in offshore wind in the second half.”


China cuts back, but UK to double down on clean energy investment by 2030

China might be spending its energy budget on other things at the moment, but the UK is set to invest heavily in clean energy come 2030, according to GlobalData.

The market intelligence firm’s latest report suggests Britain will double the capacity of its renewables sector over the next decade, in response to the government’s plan to shutter the last 1.5GW of its unabated coal power by 2025.

In addition, all but one of the country’s nuclear power plants are due to close over the next ten years, prompting the UK to commit to increasing its clean energy capacity at an annual growth rate of 5.5%, meaning it will reach 80.3GW by 2030.

Its power industry analyst Arkapal Sil said: “The UK’s commitment to renewable energy is reflected from its renewable energy roadmap of 2011, giving a target of 15% renewable energy consumption by 2030.

“But the intermittent nature of renewables necessitates integration of battery storage systems along with rapid grid modernisation to accomodate varying renewable power while maintaining grid parity.

The UK has a very robust track record of reducing its carbon dioxide emissions, and banking on gas and renewables for power generation will further help the country achieve this.

“However, overdependence on these technologies may result in fluctuations in electricity bills owing to massive investments in infrastructure, along with possible gas price swings in the international market.”