Last year investors poured $187 billion into electricity from renewable sources (wind, sun, biomass, etc.), versus $157 billion for fossil fuels, calculates Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
“The progress of renewables has been nothing short of remarkable,” United Nations Environment Program Executive Secretary Achim Steiner said in an interview. “You have record investment in the midst of an economic and financial crisis.”
This boom was spurred by aggressive government action all over the planet, including $66 billion in subsidies.
But will this boom continue?
Looks like it. The European Environment Agency tallied up all the renewable projects that member countries are planning through 2020, and the numbers are staggering.
Offshore wind energy capacity in Europe is projected to increase 17-fold between 2010 and 2020, while newer renewable technologies such as concentrated solar power and wave/tidal power will also increase more than 11-fold according to projections. European countries are also expected to significantly boost solar photovoltaic power, onshore wind and other renewable technologies over the next decade.
Of course, that probably won't happen if the Euro collapses and everyone's blaming the Germans for laying waste to the Continent for the nth time ever.
Get Grist in your inbox