U.S. Department of Energy - Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
Solar Energy Technologies Program – News
Clean Energy Investment Exceeds $117 Billion in 2007
February 6, 2008
The global investment in clean energy grew 41% in 2007, reaching
$117.2 billion, according to analysts at New Energy Finance, Ltd.
Wind power drew the greatest amount of investments, followed by solar
energy and energy efficiency, while biofuels investments slowed due to
surging costs for crops. The majority of the funds, $54.5 billion,
were used to finance assets such as biorefineries, wind farms, and
solar power plants. In fact, nearly half of that went toward wind
energy investments. Meanwhile, solar project investments of
$5.9 billion represented an 82% increase over investments in 2006,
driven partly by large solar energy facilities in Spain and Italy.
Solar energy also became the leading clean energy candidate for
venture capital and private equity investment, attracting $3 billion
of new equity. Much of that went toward solar energy startups in the
United States; HelioVolt alone raised $101 million. Clean energy
stocks also did well, as thin-film solar power company First Solar led
the pack with a nearly 8-fold increase in price. See New Energy Finance's press releases on clean energy investments
(PDF 32 KB)
and stocks (PDF 85 KB).
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If all that sounds good to you, consider this: to meet current climate
change abatement targets, New Energy Finance estimates that clean
energy investments will need to triple over the next five years. The
company projects that investments in renewable energy generation
facilities and biorefineries will need to sustain a 20% annual growth
through 2013 to meet global targets for clean energy. Among the
companies stepping up to that challenge are Najafi Companies, LLC,
which is committing $100 million to a new startup portfolio company
for alternative energy, and GE Energy Financial Services, which now
plans to invest $6 billion in renewable energy by 2010. The GE company
doubled its goal after meeting its $3 billion goal a couple years
early. See the press releases from New Energy Finance
(PDF 28 KB),
Najafi Companies, and GE Energy Financial
Services (PDF 104 KB).