New study outlines Russia’s potential to quadruple renewable energy by 2030
Russia with an abundance of all clean energy sources has the potential to increase its renewable energy share four times by 2030, according to a new report from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).
Currently, renewables account for around 3% of the Russia's energy and they are likely to contribute to about 11% by 2030, says IRENA which has released a study, titled as Renewable Energy Prospects for the Russian Federation.
Under its current energy strategy, Russia aims to increase its renewable energy share to only 4.9% by the same timeline which is well below par of the 11.3% estimated by the renewable energy cooperation and information exchange hub.
IRENA Director-General Adnan Z. Amin said: “The global energy transition is underway, with this study we have a better understanding of Russia’s renewable energy potential, what benefits it could bring, and what can be done to make this a reality.
“Russia has had a long history of leadership in the energy sector – and now has the opportunity to extend that leadership into renewable energy.”
IRENA stated that the country has large hydropower and bioenergy projects which are the primary contributors to its renewable energy generation.
By 2015 end, Russia recorded 53.5GW renewable energy generation capacity in operations. This, IRENA says constitutes to around 20% of Russia’s total electricity generation.
According to IRENA, large hydropower plants make up for the majority renewable energy generation in Russia.
Amin added that further development of the country’s abundant and diverse renewable energy sources hold the key to get several benefits like enhancing of energy security and reduction in energy supply costs in remote areas.
The new working paper projects the power sector to have 30% renewable energy share, the highest ever by 2030. Hydropower is likely to contribute 20% while the remainder expected from solar photovoltaic, wind and geothermal power.
To execute IRENA’s recommendations, Russia would have to invest about $15bn annually between 2015 and 2050. The figures, IRENA said could be lowered by implementing certain measures like export of biofuels to Europe, and hydro and wind power to Asia.