Global investment in clean energy rose 6.5% in 2011 to a record $263 billion with the US taking the lead position from China for the first time since 2009, according to The Pew Charitable Trusts.
According to the group’s latest research, there is now a total of 565 GW of renewable power installed globally, nearly 50% more than the total nuclear capacity.
Meanwhile, in terms of financing among the G-20 nations, the US attracted $48 billion in 2011, up a massive 42% on the previous year, to support 6.7 GW of new wind capacity and more than 1 GW if solar power.
The US now has installed renewable energy capacity of 93 GW, second only to China, which installed 20 GW of wind power capacity last year taking its total to 133 GW.
Following the US and China are Germany ($30.6 billion investment and 7.4 GW new solar capacity), Italy ($28 billion and nearly 8 GW of solar power) and India (over $10 billion).
The UK, however, managed only investments of $9.4 billion in 2011, although this was up 35% on the previous year. Investment levels have still not topped the $11 billion achieved in 2009 when a number of large wind projects came online.
“The clean energy sector received its trillionth dollar of private investment just before the end of 2011, demonstrating significant growth over the past eight years,” says Michael Liebreich, CEO of Bloomberg New Energy Finance, Pew’s research partner. “Solar installations drove most of the activity last year as the falling price of photovoltaic modules… more than compensated for weakening clean energy support mechanisms in a number of parts of the world.”
For further information:
GE and Carbon Trust team up to back low-carbon investment (21-Feb)
Energy Innovation Centre connects up bright ideas to £29 million fund (17-Feb)
UK business ‘green’ spending set to reach £6.8 billion by 2015, says Verdantix (2-Feb)
US solar installations break the 1 GW barrier for first time (16-Dec 2011)
12 April 2012