Developing world may overtake West in green energy stakes

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Developing countries are now investing almost as much as developed countries in renewable energy, with 46 per cent of the global total in 2012, according to the UN Environment Programme.

Its latest report, Global Trends in Renewable Energy Investment 2013, confirms that a “geographic shift” is under way and that renewables account for an ever-growing share of electricity generation capacity added worldwide – including China.

Although global investments in renewable energy last year failed to top the year before, 2012 scored as the “second highest year ever” for the sector. The 12 per cent drop from 2011 is attributed to much lower prices for solar energy and weakened EU and US demand.

The continuing upward trend in developing countries saw investments topping $112 billion in 2012, compared to $132 billon in developed countries – a dramatic change from 2007, when the developed world invested 2.5 times more in renewables (excluding large hydro).

The 2012 global investment for renewable energy was $244 billion, bringing renewables capacity worldwide to 1,470 gigawatts – up by 8.5 per cent on the previous year. Altogether, since 2006 global investment in renewables is estimated at $1.3 trillion.

Source: The Irish Times (link opens in a new window)

renewable energy