The Dominican Republic can increase the share of modern renewable energy in its energy mix from 9% to 27% by 2030, according to a new report from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).
“Renewable Energy Prospects: Dominican Republic” finds the country could increase its share of renewables in the power sector alone from 12% to 44% by 2030.
“The Dominican Republic can become one of the leading countries in the Caribbean region for renewable energy deployment,” says Dolf Gielen, director of IRENA’s Innovation and Technology Centre. “If leaders act now to implement more renewables, the country can reduce air pollution, enhance energy security, boost the economy and play a leading role in the global fight against climate change.”
According to the report, the main challenges and opportunities for the Dominican Republic lie in the power sector: Under current policies, the country’s share of renewables in power generation will reach only 21% by 2030 and fall short of the 25% by 2025 national target. However, says IRENA, harnessing the country’s rich renewable energy resources – mostly from solar and wind – could deliver up to 44% of all electricity generation by 2030.
The report says an estimated annual investment of $566 million in renewable energy is needed between now and 2030 to reach the 27% renewables mark, but achieving this will actually result in net savings of up to $5.3 billion annually by 2030 when factors such as human health and reduced emissions are accounted for.
The report recommends a suite of actions to help achieve the country’s full renewable potential, including setting clear and consistent renewable energy targets, designing appropriate incentives and market mechanisms, and conducting transmission planning and grid expansion.
“Many island nations face similar challenges in the energy sector, including energy security and energy access,” adds Gielen. “The measures outlined in this report can thus be helpful far beyond the Dominican Republic.”
The report is part of IRENA’s renewable energy road map, Remap 2030, which provides a plan to double the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix by 2030.