The pandemic is expected to slash by 13 percent the development of new renewable energy-based power generation capacity at just 167,000 megawatts, and clear government policies are key to ensure a rebound in 2021, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA).

The Paris-based IEA said in a statement the COVID-19 crisis was hurting the industry worldwide but not halting global growth.

Lockdowns and physical distancing measures in response to COVID-19, aside from supply chain disruptions and emerging difficulties in financing, are causing delays in construction activity.

This year’s expected decline will be the first time in 20 years, although growth is expected to resume in 2021 when most of the delayed projects come online.

Also, the expectation of growth is based on the assumption that government policies that are supportive of renewables would continue.

The IEA said renewable power sources have so far showed impressive resilience despite the disruptions and changes caused by the coronavirus pandemic—their share of the power generation mix is increasing in many markets.

In 2021, the agency forecasts that additions in renewable power will rebound to the level reached in 2019. A big push will come from the partial commissioning of two mega hydropower projects in China.

“The resilience of renewa­ble electricity to the impacts of the COVID-19 crisis is good news but cannot be taken for granted,” IEA executive director Fatih Birol said in a statement.



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