I have said many times that despite the dim prospects of succeeding a climate deal in Copenhagen, I am optimistic that we will eventually manage to move forward and reduce carbon dioxide emissions. That is because the big emitters have decided to address the threat of global climate change and have– in many cases – agreed to encourage the mobilization of public and private resources to support a fund or funds that would invest in clean energy projects.
Businesses usually follow the technological developments and the money. In a survey of the green energy market, Bloomberg News reports that Global investments in renewable-energy projects may climb to a record $200 billion worldwide next year, while according to Michael Liebreich, chairman of London-based New Energy Finance, spending on technologies such as solar panels and wind turbines will rise about 50 percent from $130 billion this year and top the previous high of $155 billion in 2008.
Liebreich said that government spending on green energy will more than double from this year; U.S., China and 10 other nations have already approved a total of $177 billion in stimulus funding for green energy over several years.
Ira Ehrenpreis, general partner with Technology Partners, a Palo Alto, California-based clean energy investment fund with about $700 million under management says that it is “renaissance time in the clean-tech sector” and that “a clean-tech company has the world as its customer base.”
Analysts, meanwhile say that with China, the European Union (EU) and U.S. states aggressively adopting regulations and incentives promoting green energy, the field will continue to rapidly develop even if a global climate treaty is not signed. Already major renewable energy projects are now underway across the globe.
CLP, Hong Kong’s biggest electricity supplier, is aiming to reduce carbon-dioxide emissions by about 75 percent by 2050. The company is building a $903 million offshore wind farm.
NRG Energy Inc., the second-largest power producer in Texas, taking advantage of government funding, plans to spend $2 billion on renewable power over the next six years.
Columbus, Ohio-based American Electric said this year it will buy 2,000 megawatts (1 MW is enough to power about 800 U.S. homes) of wind power by the end of 2011, doubling its original goal, in order to meet state renewable-energy requirements and company targets.