Renewable Energy Tops Fossil Fuels in New Power Plant Investments

Los Angeles Times
November 25, 2011

Renewable Power Trumps Fossil Fuels for First Time

Bloomberg New Energy Finance reports that renewable energy is surpassing fossil fuels for the first time in new power-plant investments. Electricity from the wind, sun, waves and biomass drew $187 billion last year compared with $157 billion for natural gas, oil and coal. Accelerating installations of solar- and wind-power plants led to lower equipment prices, making clean energy more competitive with coal. The renewables boom was stimulated by about $66 billion of subsidies last year. Looking forward, Bloomberg New Energy Finance that renewable energy investments are projected to double over the next eight years and reach $395 billion per year. With respect to investments in wind energy, the Global Wind Energy Council projects that wind operators are likely to install 43 gigawatts of generating capacity this year and 48 gigawatts next year, up from 36 gigawatts in 2010. It should be noted that the world is shifting toward consuming more renewable energy even without a global agreement on limiting greenhouse gases.