WASHINGTON, Jan. 20, 2016 - Clean energy investment flourished in China, Africa, the U.S., Latin America and India in 2015, driving the world total to a record $328.9 billion. This is up 4 percent from 2014’s $315.9 billion and surpasses the 2011 record by 3 percent, says Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
Last year was also the highest ever for installation of renewable power capacity, with 64 gigawatts (GW) of wind and 57 GW of solar photovoltaics commissioned, an increase of nearly 30 percent over 2014.
The latest figures from Bloomberg New Energy Finance show dollar investment growing globally in 2015 to nearly six times its 2004 total, despite influences that might have been expected to restrain expansion, such as the plunge in fossil fuel commodity prices.
“These figures are a stunning riposte to all those who expected clean energy investment to stall on falling oil and gas prices. They highlight the improving cost-competitiveness of solar and wind power, driven in part by the move by many countries to reverse-auction new capacity rather than providing advantageous tariffs, a shift that has put producers under continuing price pressure,” says Michael Liebreich, chairman of the advisory board at Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
“Wind and solar power are now being adopted in many developing countries as a natural and substantial part of the generation mix: They can be produced more cheaply than often high wholesale power prices; they reduce a country's exposure to expected future fossil fuel prices; and above all they can be built very quickly to meet unfulfilled demand for electricity. And it is very hard to see these trends going backwards, in the light of December's Paris Climate Agreement.”
Looking at the figures in detail, the biggest piece of the $329.3 billion invested in clean energy in 2015 was asset finance of utility-scale projects such as wind farms, solar parks, biomass and waste-to-energy plants and small hydroelectric schemes. This totaled $199 billion, up 6 percent on the previous year.
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