October 19, 2010
Pew Study: China Skewering Clean Tech Competition
As we projected in "Rising Tigers, Sleeping Giant," the latest Pew report finds that China has a commanding lead over the rest of the G-20 in clean energy investment:
"Even in the midst of a global recession, the clean energy market has experienced impressive growth," said Phyllis Cuttino, who directs the Pew Environment Group's Global Warming Campaign. "Countries are jockeying for leadership. They know that investing in clean energy can renew manufacturing bases, and create export opportunities, jobs and businesses."
"The facts speak for themselves," said Bloomberg New Energy Finance Chief Executive Michael Liebreich. "2009 clean energy investment in China totaled $34.6 billion, while in the United States it totaled $18.6 billion. China is now clearly the world leader in attracting new capital and making new investments in this area."
Countries with strong nationwide policy frameworks, including renewable energy standards, carbon markets, priority loans for renewable energy projects and mandated clean energy targets, such as China, Brazil, Spain, United Kingdom and Germany, have the most robust clean energy sectors as a percentage of their economies. Countries without such policy frameworks including the United States, Japan, and Australia lag behind.
"The United States' competitive position is at risk in the emerging clean energy economy," said Cuttino. "Our nation has a critical choice to make: pass the federal policies necessary to position us as the world leader in the large and growing global clean energy market or continue to watch as China and other countries race ahead."
For those who need a reminder, those steps include:
1) Significantly increasing investment in clean energy innovation by making a sustained commitment to research, development, and demonstration (RD&D).
2) Spurring the adoption of innovative manufacturing processes and accelerating economies of scale in U.S. clean energy manufacturing.
3) The U.S. government actively supporting, through targeted public policy and investment, the acceleration of clean energy deployment and market creation in order to reduce the price of promising clean energy technologies and encourage their widespread adoption.