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Renewable energy enjoys another year of record growth in 2021
18th January 2022

After the – yes, we’re going to use that word again – unprecedented turmoil that was 2020, it’s fair to say that the vast majority of us were hoping that 2021 would be somewhat calmer. That turns out to have been only partially correct; 2021 still brought its own fair share of chaos for us to deal with.

Thankfully though it’s not all bad news, as the International Energy Agency recently declared it another record year for renewable energy, in spite of the continuing impact of coronavirus. So if you’ve been thinking about commercial solar panels for your own premises, there’s never been a better time to push the button. Here’s why!

So how much have renewables grown by, and why?

The latest report from the IEA notes that the world has installed a total of about 290GW of new renewable energy generation capacity, mostly in the form of wind turbines and solar panels. It might not look like all that much when written as a triple digit number, so let’s put that figure in perspective.

According to the US Department of Energy, it roughly equates to the output of over 900 million solar panels, and it’s enough to power thirty-one billion, nine hundred million LED light bulbs. (That’s more than four times as many people on the face of the earth, by the way.) It’s a lot of energy, is the point, and what’s more, notably outstrips the figures from last year. If the current trends remain on track, renewable energy generating capacity is likely to outstrip the capacity of fossil fuels and nuclear energy (combined) by 2026.

So what’s been driving the change? Well, a lot of it has been political, as governments around the world take concerted action with more ambitious targets on cutting greenhouse gas emissions. The need for these has been been increasingly stark in recent years, particularly highlighted at the COP26 UN global climate summit in November 2021. On a more granular level, it’s also been influenced to some degree by greater take-up of renewable energy solutions by commercial businesses in a wide range of sectors, from agriculture to manufacturing to retail and wholesale, reflected in the steadily growing support amongst the wider public, too.

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Net Zero has never been more important

Solar alone is providing about half the increase, according to the IEA’s report, which goes on to say that renewables will account for 95% of the increase in global power generation capacity from now until the end of 2026. However, it’s worth noting that this is still only about half of what’s required to meet Net Zero carbon emissions by the middle of the century. Countless customers, investors and potential business partners are keenly aware of this – which should put Corporate Social Responsibility right at the top of your agenda this year. The public and commercial sector are expecting businesses to be ever more rigorous about measuring their impact on the environment, and bringing in more measures to mitigate it – which is exactly where commercial solar panels come in.

In fact, commercial solar panels provide a significant range of short and long-term benefits to your business, doing everything from helping you save money on your energy bills, to giving you more energy security against turbulent market hikes and troughs. Crucially though, when it comes to CSR, they serve as tangible and demonstrable evidence of your commitment to transforming your energy supply, which may end up making all the difference as to whether or not potential customers or partners choose to do business with you.

In short, commercial solar panels can provide the perfect way to kickstart your Net Zero ambitions – and that’s exactly where we can help here at Low Carbon Energy. Our experts have over 30 years of combined experience, having helped SMEs and large corporations across a wide variety of sectors transform their business’ energy supply.

Each of our installations is bespoke, and we tailor your solution on your specific energy profile, helping us to maximise carbon reductions and save you up to thousands of pounds in energy bills. Feel free to look at our case studies for just a few examples of businesses which have reaped huge rewards from solar, such as Boeing and Irish Water. To find out how we can help you, feel free to give us a call today on 01282 421 489!

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