Global total new investment in clean energy 2004-10 ($BN)

Good news: clean energy investment is basically doing awesome. "Few, if any, sectors can point to such a robust and broadly-based growth during a tumultuous time in the world economy," says Nathaniel Bullard of Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

Look at the numbers: Clean energy has not had a down year since the creation of major market support programmes in Germany, which began in 2004. The growth rate was nearly 50 percent in 2005 and 2006, and even remained high–19 percent–during the first year of the financial crisis (and had the crisis not occurred in 2008, the rate would have been much higher). In fact, the only year of low growth was in 2009, during the depths of the economic downturn.

Despite ongoing economic weakness, 2010 came back with a vengeance. Whatever's happening in the U.S., when looked at in aggregate, the world as a whole is all about clean energy.