Renewable power sources such as wind have made gains as fossil fuel use has declined during the pandemic. CAROL M. HIGHSMITH/GPA PHOTO ARCHIVE/FLICKR
The pandemic-induced global economic meltdown has triggered a drop in energy demand and related carbon emissions that could transform how the world gets its energy – even after the disease wanes, according to a report by the International Energy Agency (IEA).
The precipitous drop in energy use is unparalleled back to the Great Depression of the 1930s. But not all energy sources are suffering equally. Use of renewable energy, for instance, has risen thanks to new projects coming online and the low cost of turning wind turbines or harvesting sunlight.
“The energy industry that emerges from this crisis will be significantly different from the one that came before,” predicts Fatih Birol, executive director of the Paris-based IEA.