IRENA Global Atlas

From Open Energy Information

IRENA logo trans.png  Global Atlas for Solar and Wind Energy

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Geospatial Interface

The map interface enables users to visualise information on wind and solar resources, and to overlay additional information such as protected areas, roads or infrastructures.

Data Catalogue
The data services catalogue is the technical backbone of the application. In the catalogue, all geospatial data and services provided by the various stakeholders are listed and can be searched and accessed.

Contributing Data

Data providers willing to contribute independently are welcome to contact to initiate the dialogue. After evaluation of the dataset, and agreement to integrate the dataset, a data sharing agreement is signed with IRENA in order to protect the data provider’s intellectual property. Map-based datasets are referenced through the data catalogue and made accessible through the map interface. Time series and other data sources can also be referenced by the data catalogue. The system standards are described at: “IRENA Standards”.

Open data may also be contributed to OpenEI's datasets.

Contributing Partners

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The partnership is open and dynamic. IRENA (International Renewable Energy Agency) will implement and steer the overall development of the Global Atlas.

Please visit the Global Atlas Partnership page to see supporting countries, technical partners, partner projects and related multilateral initiatives.

Launch Geospatial Interface

Browse Data Catalog

What is the Global Atlas for Solar & Wind?

The Global Atlas is the comprehensive information platform on the potential of renewable energy. It provides resource maps from leading technical institutes worldwide and tools for evaluating the technical potential of renewable energies. It can function as a catalyst for policy development and energy planning, and can support investors in entering renewable energy markets.

Why develop a Global Atlas of renewable energy potential?

What share of a country's energy mix can be supplied by renewable energy? Where are the resources located? What is the most cost-effective combination of technologies? What volume of investment does this represent and is there a market large enough to create a supply chain?

Assessing renewable energy resources is the necessary first step in answering these questions and in eventually creating an enabling market environment for deploying renewable energy. This first step requires large upfront investment in evaluation, and a high level of technical knowledge. That is why a global and open portal providing this information can make it easier to take this first step.

Renewable energy databases mainly focus on specific aspects, such as physical information on insulation or wind speed. Other databases feature economic and policy frameworks such as support mechanisms for renewable energies.

The Global Atlas integrates all aspects and information needed, from resources to potential and includes accompanying information such as socio-economic data, policies and support mechanisms, and infrastructure data. Through a growing partnership and new measurements, the Atlas will be continuously expanded.

When a country decides to develop renewable energy, it is faced with a number of questions:

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The first step to answer those questions is to know about the available resources, to create maps of the available resources. The second step is to analyse the technical and economic potentials. This needs knowledge about renewable technologies and their development into the future and socio-economic data and policy information.

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These potentials can be used to create scenarios of technology deployment, how the future energy system can evolve in a consistent way. Based on the scenarios, both strategies for market development and political and financial instruments can be developed. This sets the political and economic framework conditions to create renewable energy markets (The arrows are turning because it is a constantly evolving process).

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