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Growth in renewable power stalled last year around the world, an unexpected development that raises questions about whether the world can meet ambitious climate goals to reduce greenhouse gases from fossil fuels.

Last year was the first time since 2001 that power generation from renewable energy did not increase from one year to the next, according to the Paris-based intergovernmental group International Energy Agency. New capacity from wind, hydro, solar and bio-energy increased by 180 gigawatts last year, the same as it did in 2017.


The growth rate is not enough to meet the goals of the 2015 Paris Agreement, a pact made by most of the nations in the world to reduce global emissions. The United States withdrew two years ago from the accord, a move made by President Donald Trump who said the pact would undermine the U.S. economy.


Renewable capacity grew last year in the United States, the world’s third largest market, reflecting expansion of wind energy. Wind and solar energy capacity also expanded in many emerging economies, especially in the Middle East, North Africa and parts of Asia.

But solar energy growth worldwide flattened last year, reflecting a change in incentives in China. And the European Union added less than the usual new capacity for wind power, according to the report.

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Renewable energy needs to grow by more than 300 gigawatts each year until 2030 to reach the goals set by the Paris Agreement.




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