Global investment in energy transition technologies, including energy efficiency, reached a record high of USD 1.3 trillion in 2022. However, annual investments need to at least quadruple to remain on track to achieve the 1.5°C Scenario in IRENA’s World Energy Transitions Outlook 2022. Investment in renewable energy was also unprecedented – at USD 0.5 trillion – but represented less than one third of the average investment needed each year. Investments are also not flowing at the pace or scale needed to accelerate progress towards universal energy access; investments in off-grid renewable energy solutions in 2021 – at USD 0.5 billion – fell far short of the USD 2.3 billion needed annually.
This third edition of the biannual joint report by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and Climate Policy Initiative (CPI) analyses investment trends by technology, sector, region, source of finance and financial instrument in the period 2013-2020. It identifies financing gaps to support informed policy making for the deployment of renewables at the scale needed to accelerate the energy transition.
The report finds that investments have become further concentrated in specific technologies and uses, and in a small number of countries/regions. It underscores the need to direct public funds to regions and countries that have considerable untapped potential but find it difficult to attract investment. Funding must be focused on supporting energy transition infrastructure development, as well as enabling policy frameworks to drive investment and address persistent socio-economic gaps.