Assay of renewable energy transition: A systematic literature review

Bhattarai, Utsav and Maraseni, Tek ORCID: and Apan, Armando ORCID: (2022) Assay of renewable energy transition: A systematic literature review. Science of the Total Environment, 833:155159. pp. 1-18. ISSN 0048-9697


Issues of environmental degradation, finite quantity and uneven spatial distribution of fuels in nature, and growing demand accentuated by volatility of oil prices have led to the global clean renewable energy transition (RET). With an objective of examining the current knowledge-stock on RET, we reviewed 248 journal publications pooled from three databases (ScienceDirect, Web of Science and Scopus) using a Systematic Literature Review method. This study does not focus on the specifications of a particular energy technology or regress relations among a limited set of variables. Rather, the key contribution is the critical assessment of the factors that encourage and those that hinder the transition process to provide a wider perspective through seven broad lenses: technological, investment, market, environmental, government and institutional, policy and social. Research, development and implementation of technology is a direct outcome of policy investment. Developed countries are leading the RET research while the global south is far behind. Most of the studies were found to be donor-driven which faced a serious risk of being counter-welcomed in different settings of the world without compromising the objectives of the transition. A strong international collaboration among the rich and poor countries is urgently felt necessary to foster mutual benefits. Research, planning and implementation of the RET would be highly effective and sustainable through a participatory bottom-up approach promoting local technology instead of imposed expensive imported ones. The need for “demand-pull” and “technology-push” policy instruments is stringent for successful transition. We conclude that there is a unanimous agreement among all the studies on the future prospects of renewable energy in the electricity sector; however, some skepticism still exists regarding other high energy demanding areas. Our review recommends updating existing and designing new robust policy mixes to guide the modality and pace of the RET, adhering to local specificities.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Files associated with this item cannot be displayed due to copyright restrictions.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Institute for Life Sciences and the Environment - Centre for Sustainable Agricultural Systems (1 Aug 2018 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current – Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Surveying and Built Environment (1 Jan 2022 -)
Date Deposited: 10 May 2022 03:51
Last Modified: 10 May 2022 03:51
Uncontrolled Keywords: Renewable energy transition; Systematic literature review; Policy mixes; Drivers of transition; Participatory bottom-up approach
Fields of Research (2020): 41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4104 Environmental management > 410404 Environmental management
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 18 ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT > 1899 Other environmental management > 189999 Other environmental management not elsewhere classified
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