Clean energy investment in Africa, China, Latin America, India and the US surged throughout 2015, driving world wide expenditure to 476.34 billion Australian dollars, its highest ever figure.
Despite influences that might have been expected to restrain growth in 2015, just released Bloomberg New Energy Finance figures show dollar investment nearly six times its 2004 total to a new record of one third of a trillion US dollars.
This growth in defiance of declines in the cost of solar photovoltaics, meaning that more capacity could be installed for the same price; the strength of the US currency, reducing the dollar value of non-dollar investment; the continued weakness of the European economy, formerly the powerhouse of renewable energy investment; and perhaps most significantly, the plunge in fossil fuel commodity prices.
Chairman of the advisory board at Bloomberg New Energy Finance Michael Liebreich, said: “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.
“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.”
For Australia, 2015 investment in large-scale renewable energy in pretty much evaporated after the Abbott government first demolished the carbon tax and then held the Renewable Energy Target (RET) hostage for eighteen months. Just $15 million was invested from February 2014 on large-scale wind, solar and other clean energy projects.
Kobad Bhavnagri, head of Bloomberg New Energy Finance in Australia said “It can’t be understated that the actions of the Abbott government have destroyed confidence in the renewable energy market,”.
With the RET issue resolved last year, hopefully brighter days are ahead for renewables investment in Australia. If you want to be part of the renewable energy sector give us a call today. Our experienced team can help you to take charge of your energy consumption and costs. Click on the blue button below and we will be happy to answer all your solar questions!