Top ten countries with the highest proportion of renewable energy


Compare the Market has released the results of a study conducted to analyse countries using the highest and the least amounts of renewable energy.

The study examined some 21 countries and how they have invested in climate-friendly energy resources including wind, solar, hydropower and bioenergy.

Rank Country % of renewable energy used
1 Germany 12.74
2 UK 11.95
3 Sweden 10.96
4 Spain 10.17
5 Italy 8.8
6 Brazil 7.35
7 Japan 5.3
8 Turkey 5.25
9 Australia 4.75
10 USA 4.32

Germany’s renewables use is high owing to massive investments made as part of efforts by the government to meet EU renewable energy and climate action goals.

Germany has been working to reduce its coal use, with the first half of 2019 seeing the country use more renewable sources of energy to produce electricity than coal and nuclear power combined for the first time.

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In 2019, wind energy provided over 40% of the UK’s power. In 2018, the UK saw a dramatic decrease of 96% in its use of coal since 1970, showing its push to using different energy sources. 

The US ranks at 10th with a clean energy proportion of less than half that of the UK and nearly three times less that of Germany at 4.32%. South Africa ranks at 15th with even lower renewable use levels at just 2.25%.

The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has revealed that renewables will provide the majority of global energy at an impressive 86% by 2050,

Peter Earl from the Energy team at Compare the Market, said: “It’s very important to not only be aware of how much energy from non-renewable sources is being used both individually and globally but to put that in a context that everyone can understand. 

“Championing the countries that are leading the way in using renewable energy is equally important and we are proud to see the UK is one of the countries highest up in the league table.”

The full study is available for download here.