The report was published by the IEA Renewable Energy Technology Deployment (IEA-RETD) which claims that many people are mistaking renewable energy as costly, despite the fact that it is quickly becoming a profitable business case.

Three other reports from the IEA-RETD, also released today, give guidance to policy and decision makers on particular challenges facing renewable energy deployment.

Chairman Hans Jørgen Koch said: “These reports confirm the growing consensus that a transformation of the energy system needs to start immediately. Any delay will increase the costs of the necessary transition to a renewable-sourced energy system.”

According to the reports, new renewable energy technologies costs are decreasing rapidly, while conventional power plants are affected by lower utilisation rates, volatile coal and gas prices, CO2 pricing, and lower electricity demand than expected. If energy prices would account for air pollution and climate change, the report states, renewables would already be the most beneficial energy source for society as well as business.

IEA-RETD has also prepared a guidebook for policy makers and project developers, illustrating how to deal with possible negative side effects of renewables, such as visual or noise impacts, or increased local transport for biomass.

These measures include stakeholder involvement, participation and compensation; clear spatial planning and trustworthy legal procedures.

Conor McGlone

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