ICYMI: What’s Behind the World’s Biggest Climate Victory? Capitalism

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Worth your time. The Bloomberg team did a deep dive on Sunday on what’s driving growth in the renewable energy sector.

“The market triumph of renewable energy marks the biggest victory yet in the fight against global warming. Solar and wind are proliferating not because of moral do-gooders but because they’re now the most profitable part of the power business in most of the world. An industry that once relied on heavy subsidies and was propped up by government mandates is now increasingly standing on its own.

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“Solar, wind and hydropower resources combined generate more than a quarter of the world’s electricity. As a recent United Nations report put it: The renewable energy sector is “looking all grown up.

“Last year alone, global investments in renewable energy hit almost $273 billion, according to a report by BNEF, UN Environment and the Frankfurt School. That’s three times the estimated spending on coal- and gas-powered generation. Electricity prices, meanwhile, plunge below zero at times in solar-rich Germany and California and wind-rich Texas, sending a signal to generators that they need to back off so they don’t stress the grid.

“Low costs sparked a clean-power frenzy that has quadrupled global renewable energy capacity to 1,650 gigawatts within the past nine years—more than every power plant in the U.S. combined. From Western Europe to China, solar and wind are beating out fossil-fuel plants without subsidies.”

Check out the full story and some excellent graphics at Bloomberg.com.