This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.
Report: China Led the World in Clean Energy Investments in 2009
China invested $34.6 billion in the clean energy economy in 2009, making it the world leader in clean energy investments, according to a recent report by The Pew Charitable Trusts. The Pew report examined the clean energy investments and financing of the Group of 20 (G-20)—the 20 countries that represent all the major economies and the leading developing economies of the world—and found China on top, with nearly double the U.S. total of $18.6 billion. While the United States remains the leader in venture capital and private equity investments in clean energy, which are essential for technology development, it trailed in asset financing, which is needed to actually build clean energy projects. Taking the nation's total clean energy investments as a percentage of gross domestic product, the United States invests only one-fifth as much as Spain and only one-third of what China and the United Kingdom are investing.
The report found burgeoning global investments in clean energy, with investments by nearly all G-20 members increasing by more than 50% over the past five years; a 230% increase in global clean energy investments since 2005; and a total of $162 billion in global clean energy investments in 2009, despite the global recession. As a result, more than 250 gigawatts of renewable energy capacity have been installed around the world, producing 6% of global energy. The report also projects that global clean energy investments will increase to $200 billion in 2010. The report found the most robust clean energy sectors in countries with strong national policies, including renewable energy standards, carbon markets, mandated clean energy targets, and priority loans for renewable energy projects. The Pew report includes clean energy profiles for each of the G-20 nations. See the Pew press release and the full report (PDF 2.9 MB). Download Adobe Reader.