Increased Global Investment in Clean Energy

Brian Hicks

Written By Brian Hicks

Posted April 17, 2012

Global investment in clean energy went up 6.5 percent in 2011, reaching a record $263 billion dollars, according to a new report by The Pew Charitable Trusts.

According to the report, the United States led the way in private finance and investment attracting $48 billion, a 44 percent increase.

The large influx in clean energy investment was fueled by steep price declines for solar equipment. Over the past 12 months the price of solar modules has been cut in half. The price deduction led to a 44 percent increase in investment, accounting for more than half of all clean energy investment among G-20 countries.

The confluence of falling energy technology prices and growing investments accelerated installation of clean energy capacity by a record 83.6 gigawatts in 2011.  Experts in the industry argue that in the upcoming decade wind and solar energy will become competitive with conventional means of generating electricity.

Yet despite the current flood of investments and the optimistic outlook of the experts, some clean energy companies are having a hard time finding enough investors to go public.

BrightSource Energy is one such company who feels the market conditions are not quite right for launching a clean energy initial public offering.

Despite interest from major companies like Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) and NRG Energy (NYSE: NRG), the company rescinded its forms to go public hours before trading was scheduled to begin.

In a statement released by the company, John Woolard, BrightSource’s Chief executive, cited poor market conditions and economic volatility as the primary reasons the company withdrew its offer to go public. 

Competition from cheap natural gas, increased market presence of photovoltaic panels, and the lack of Government subsidies resulted in a paradigm shift among investors.

Once striving to invest in potentially lucrative clean energy companies, investors have now began to turn there back on the industry.

Until next time,


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