From Around the World

New Report on Global Trends in Clean Energy

Figures for the third quarter show another year-on-year rise.

World clean energy investment in the first three quarters of 2014 was 16% ahead of the same period of 2013, at $175.1bn, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. Although this figure excludes R&D as well as energy smart technologies asset finance, which is estimated annually.

Some highlights of the report: 

Clean energy investment in the July-to-September quarter was $55bn, up 12% from the $48.9bn achieved in Q3 2013. The third quarter is generally weaker than the second quarter, as it was this year, with the Q3 total 16% down on a strong $65.2bn in Q2 2014.

The third quarter saw a leap in Chinese solar investment, to a new record of $12.2bn, up from $7.5bn in Q3 2013 and $8bn in Q2 2014. China is building a large number of utility-scale photovoltaic projects linked to its main transmission grid, and Bloomberg New Energy Finance forecasts that its solar installations will total 13-14GW in 2014, nearly a third of the world total.

There were other strong investment figures in Q3 from Japan, at 8.6bn, up 17% from the same quarter in 2013, with solar again the dominant renewable energy source. Other countries showing a bounce in investment in the latest quarter were Canada, France and India, while there were significant projects financed in a number of new markets, including Myanmar and Sri Lanka.

“It is heartening to see investment heading for an up-year in 2014 after two down years — thanks, in large part, to the greatly enhanced competitiveness of solar, and to some extent wind,” said Michael Liebreich, chairman of the advisory board at Bloomberg New Energy Finance. “However, there is no room for complacency because clean energy investment of between $200bn and $300bn a year is not large enough to herald the rapid transformation of the power system that experts say is required if the world is to see a peak in CO2emissions around 2020. There is still too much policy instability holding back investor confidence.”
The Q3 2014 figures showed global asset finance for clean energy projects, such as wind farms, solar parks and geothermal plants, reaching $33.3bn. That’s up slightly from $32.8bn in the third quarter of last year. Investment in small-scale projects, such as rooftop solar, was $18.3bn — up from $13.9bn a year earlier, while equity capital raised by specialist clean energy companies on the public markets was $2.7bn, up from $2bn in Q3 2013. Venture capital and private equity investment was $918m in Q3 2014, up from a multi-year low of $592m in the same quarter of 2013.
Among the eye-catching asset finance deals of the July-to-September period were $1.1bn for the 231MW Shizen Energy Setouchi PV project in Japan, an estimated $850m for the 530MW Huanghe Hydropower Gonghe Longyangxia PV plant phase two in China, and $642m for the 60MW Dublin waste-to-energy project in Ireland.
Link to Report: Global Trends in Clean Energy
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