Report Suggests Rapid Expansion of Renewable Energy Investments
The plunge in the cost of wind and solar power that bankrupted more than two dozen manufacturers is forecast to spur a tripling of investment in renewables by 2030 and to reduce the grip fossil fuels have on world energy supply.
Annual spending on clean-energy projects that don’t add to greenhouse-gas pollution may rise to $630 billion at the end of the next decade from $190 billion last year, Bloomberg New Energy Finance said in a report today. That’s 37 percent more than estimated in November 2011 and means renewables would account for half of all generation capacity by 2030.
The findings contrast with production gluts that made most solar and wind manufacturers unprofitable last year, tipping a unit of Suntech Power Holdings Co. (STP) into bankruptcy andVestas Wind Systems A/S (VWS) into record losses. While suppliers are suffering, lower equipment prices are making more projects profitable to develop and advancing the day when renewables can rival coal and oil on cost.
“The apocalyptic views about what it will cost to shift the world to renewable energy simply aren’t true,” Michael Liebreich, chief executive officer of New Energy Finance, said in an interview. “Three years ago, we thought wind and solar would be cheap as chips, and they’ve even gone below that.”