Decarbonization is a complicated process as it implies a rethinking of how our economies can function smoothly. Currently, climate-neutral energy systems require significant amounts of critical raw materials for renewable energy installations and storage solutions.
As climate goals get more ambitious, prices of raw materials are going up, making renewable investments marginally more expensive and more exposed to geopolitical tensions.
Pandemic-related problems with investments, supply chains and logistics have compounded the situation further. European photovoltaic system developers recently reported that solar panels, mostly produced in China, are more expensive and difficult to find on the market than before. According to experts, such issues will be with us for some years to come.
Commodity price volatility
“The prices of a number of materials have risen significantly in recent months, but of course the prices of oil and natural gas have also risen significantly,” Dolf Gielen, director of the IRENA Innovation and Technology Centre, told DW. IRENA is the International Renewable Energy Agency.
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