For the first time in three years, global clean energy investment grew in 2014, rising 16% to $310 billion globally. The total is not far shy of the record $318 billion reached in 2011.
The rise in 2014 was driven largely by solar growth in the United States and China, according Bloomberg New Energy Finance. The US had its largest level of investment since 2012, and China’s investment rose a massive 32% to a record $89.5 billion – the largest investment for a single country.
Solar accounted for the biggest share of overall clean energy investment, accounting for nearly half of all funds invested. A record $19.4 billion was committed to offshore wind farm development, and more money flowed into the emerging electric car sector.
Bloomberg New Energy Finance is expecting solar and wind power installations to grow by about 10% in 2015, and is expecting the impact of lower oil prices to be felt in the electric vehicle sector, rather than in renewable electricity generation.
Another sector on the rise is “energy smart technologies,” which includes power storage, efficiency products, as well as electric cars. The sector rose 10% to $37 billion in 2014. It’s a sector that is expected to see continued growth in coming years, especially with the growing need for renewable energy storage.