The world is poised at “the dawn of a new industrial age” of green energy and clean manufacturing, the International Energy Agency (IEA) proclaimed in a 10 January report.

The burst of clean, green tech will triple the sector in value by 2030 and create millions of jobs, the IEA predicted.

The world market for green energy manufacturing—including electric vehicle batteries, electrolyzers to make green hydrogen, heat pumps, solar panels, and wind turbines—will be worth $650 billion annually by the end of this decade, the agency said, three times its current value.

That would raise the sector’s payroll from six million now to about 14 billion within eight years.

“Further rapid industrial and employment growth is expected in the following decades as transitions progress,” the report added.

However, reaching those figures will depend on countries fully implementing their various pledges regarding green energy and greenhouse gas mitigation.

China now dominates in producing and selling green-tech equipment. It also controls key supply chains, which could threaten the broader expansion of the new age the IEA foresees, the agency acknowledged.

Three countries now account for 70 percent of clean energy and clean manufacturing technologies, it added.

Similarly, the Democratic Republic of the Congo delivers 70 percent of the world’s cobalt supply; Australia, Chile, and China produce 90 percent of the world’s lithium, essential for batteries in everything from tablets to electric trucks.

Many developers and investors in clean energy are waiting for governments’ policies, such as subsidies or tax incentives, to make them financially competitive.

Such policies will have a significant impact on where those projects locate. For example, green-tech subsidies in the U.S.’s recent Inflation Reduction Act have pulled planned battery and other manufacturing plants away from Europe to the U.S., as we reported in “Germany Fears Mass Exodus of Manufacturers” (29 Nov 2022) and “U.S., EU Still at Odds Over U.S. Green Manufacturing Subsidies” (6 Dec 2022).

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and resulting Western sanctions have goosed the world’s transition to green energy, the IEA noted in an October statement.

TREND FORECAST: As we said in our Top 2023 Trend, Going Green, Like it or Not, the “green revolution” is irreversible and presents the OnTrendpreneur® opportunity of the century.

Because companies and countries will scramble to secure key minerals for manufacturing green tech, mining companies will find new sites opening to them.

Also, because those mineral supplies are finite, recycling will become an essential industry with new technologies popping up to extract needed materials from electronic, industrial, and consumer waste.

In recent years, renewable energy businesses have created more jobs than the fossil fuel industry. The green revolution will be the energy that fuels not only new business investment but also stronger consumer spending in the long term.

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