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Expand chart
Reproduced from IEA’s Renewables 2019 report; Chart: Axios Visuals

The International Energy Agency's new five-year renewable energy forecast sees faster growth than last year's outlook, but warns that movement toward zero-carbon sources is too slow to confront global warming.

What they found: The agency forecasts that total global renewable power capacity, which was 2,502 gigawatts last year, will increase 50% by 2024, with solar accounting for over half the expansion.

  • "Overall, the forecast has been revised upwards by over 14% from [last year's report], owing to a more positive outlook for solar [photovoltaic] PV and on- and offshore wind."
  • The upward revision stems from "sustained cost reductions" and a generally better policy and regulatory environment.
  • IEA sees renewables — led by expanding solar and wind deployment — rising to meet 30% of global power demand in five years.

Why it matters: Expanded use of renewables in power and heating are important tools for fighting climate change and renewables are a major growth industry.

  • But global carbon emissions are still rising as use of fossil sources and renewables alike rise to meet growing demand.
  • Simply put, while the renewables' share of power demand is growing (see chart above), the whole pie is growing too.
  • “[D]eployment still needs to accelerate if we are to achieve long-term climate, air quality and energy access goals,” IEA head Fatih Birol said in a statement alongside the new forecast.

Quick take: Even IEA's higher forecast could prove too modest, given that the agency has often underestimated renewables growth in the past.

Go deeper

The rebellion against Silicon Valley (the place)

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Smith Collection/Gado via Getty Images

Silicon Valley may be a "state of mind," but it's also very much a real enclave in Northern California. Now, a growing faction of the tech industry is boycotting it.

Why it matters: The Bay Area is facing for the first time the prospect of losing its crown as the top destination for tech workers and startups — which could have an economic impact on the region and force it to reckon with its local issues.

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
3 hours ago - Economy & Business

Telework's tax mess

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

As teleworkers flit from city to city, they're creating a huge tax mess.

Why it matters: Our tax laws aren't built for telecommuting, and this new way of working could have dire implications for city and state budgets.

Wanted: New media bosses, everywhere

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Reuters, HuffPost and Wired are all looking for new editors. Soon, The New York Times will be too.

Why it matters: The new hires will reflect a new generation — one that's addicted to technology, demands accountability and expects diversity to be a priority.

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