The International Renewable Energy Agency reports global renewable energy generation capacity increased by 152 gigawatts (GW) in 2015, up 8.3% over the previous year. Wind power capacity grew 17% last year, installing 63 GW, while solar capacity increased 37%, with 47 GW installed during the year. Hydropower capacity increased 3%. Over the past 5 years, global renewable capacity has increased by one-third with most of this growth coming from new installations of wind and solar facilities.

The developing world is leading the way in terms of fastest growth of renewable energy in 2015. Central America and the Caribbean saw their renewable energy generation capacity expand at 14.5% last year, while in Asia, where new additions in 2015 accounted for 58% of new global capacity in 2015, expanded at a rate of 12.4%. Renewable capacity increased by only 6.3% in North America and 5.2% in Europe.

China, Japan, and the US are leading the global solar energy boom according to the International Energy Agency. About 50 gigawatts (GW) of solar panels were installed worldwide last year, a 25% increase over 2014. More than half of that growth came in three countries: China (15.3 GW), Japan (11 GW), and the US with 7.3 GW. With almost 230 GW  of capacity around the globe, solar is expected to meet 1.3% of Earth’s electrical demand this year.

The UK city of Nottingham claims to have the largest solar carport in the country. The 88.5 kilowatt (kW) facility  is owned by the city council and is expected to generate more than 79,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity. Council also hopes to save some £10,000 a year on its energy bills. Last year a 67 kW solar carport was installed in the city.

The US Energy Information Agency (EIA) reported that global light-duty plug-in electric vehicle sales grew 80% in 2015, led by China and Western Europe. The EIA estimates that over 565,000 plug-in vehicles were sold around the world in 2015 – a 10-fold increase from 2011. In 2014, there were an estimated 315,519 global plug-in vehicle sales. China led the way in plug-in vehicle sales with 214,238 units sold while Western Europe sold 184,500.

The share of the total French automotive market — cars and light-commercial vehicles — held by electric vehicles in 2015 was 1.2%. Altogether around 26,550 plug-in vehicles were sold in France in 2015. The Renault Zoe accounted for 1/2 of these sales.

Japan’s plug-in electric vehicle sales grew over 50% last year, from 30,567 in 2014 to 46,339 in 2015.

Canada’s plug-in electric vehicle sales Canada more than tripled in 2015, growing from 1,521 in 2014 to 5,284 last year.

Unlike other countries, the US saw its plug-in EV sales decrease in 2015. EV sales fell by 3% to 115,262 units sold.

The energycollective provides us with an Infographic Guide to Alternative Car Fuels.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,