Renewable energy is generally defined as energy that comes from resources which are continually replenished on a human timescale such as sunlight, wind, rain, tides, waves and geothermal heat.

About 16% of global final energy consumption comes from renewable resources, with 10% of all energy from traditional biomass, mainly used for heating, and 3.4% from hydroelectricity. New renewables (small hydro, modern biomass, wind, solar, geothermal, and biofuels) accounted for another 3% and are growing rapidly.

The share of renewables in electricity generation is around 19%, with 16% of electricity coming from hydroelectricity and 3% from new renewables.

While many renewable energy projects are large-scale, renewable technologies are also suited to rural and remote areas, where energy is often crucial in human development.

Renewable energy sources, that derive their energy from the sun, either directly or indirectly, such as Hydro and wind, are expected to be capable of supplying humanity energy for almost another 1 billion years, at which point the predicted increase in heat from the sun is expected to make the surface of the Earth too hot for liquid water to exist.