By 2030, nearly half of installed power capacity in the Asia Pacific region will be from renewable energy sources, according to a new market outlook from Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
The study finds that within the next 15 years, Asia Pacific will add as much power capacity as the rest of the world combined with renewables attracting two-thirds of investment or an average of US$252bn a year.
The global energy analysts reports that onshore wind and solar PV are reaching parity levels with consumer costs.
At the best wind sites, the levelised cost of electricity (LCOE) can be as low as $67-76/MWh in countries such as China, India and Australia compared with gas at $61-94/MWh.
PV is currently around $83-115/MWh in sunny locations (excluding Japan), putting it at retail price parity in places with high power tariffs. With more cost reductions on the cards, the PV LCOE could go as low as $77-90/MWh by 2020.
Delving deeper into the forecast for PV in Asia-Pacific, the report says the market is split almost equally between rooftop (53%) and utility-scale (47%) capacity.
"Asia Pacific is a far larger opportunity for utility-scale PV in countries such as China and India than for example the EU where 94% of new PV is smallscale."
Asian governments energy regulation
When it comes to government policy to support renewable energy, "the Asia Pacific energy landscape consists of a wide variety of approaches to policy and regulation", says the report 2030 Market Outlook: Asia Pacific.
Australia has a well-functioning, fully liberalised power market; India has a semi-liberalised market dominated by state-owned entities; in China, the government controls and regulates the power market closely but is considering ways to liberalise it; and Japan still has a regionalised, fully vertically integrated utility model but this is also due to change over the next decade.