From: Reuters
Published December 8, 2007 07:21 AM

Renewables investments seen over $100 bln in 2007

NUSA DUA, Indonesia (Reuters) - World annual investments in renewable energy will top $100 billion for the first time in 2007, led by wind power, according to a report issued at United Nations climate talks on Saturday.

"Policies to promote renewable energy have mushroomed over the past few years," the Renewable Energy Policy Network, which links governments, industries and other groups, said in its study.

"In 2007, global annual investment in renewable energy will exceed $100 billion," it said of growth for wind, solar, hydro and other renewable energy sources.

"Wind power now receives the largest share of investment annually of any renewable technology, even more than large hydropower," it said.

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Renewable power capacity totaled about 240 gigawatts (GW) in 2007, excluding large hydropower projects, and represented about six percent of total global power capacity.

"The share is increasing," according to the preliminary 2007 report by the Network, presented on the sidelines of the U.N. climate conference in Bali.

The report did not give an overall comparison for 2006 but said that investment in new renewable electricity generating capacity rose to $66 billion in 2007 from $55 billion in 2006 and $39 billion in 2005.

And for 2007, it also said that there was $15 billion to $20 billion of investment in large hydropower, $10 billion to $12 billion in new manufacturing plants for solar photovoltaics and biofuels, and $16 billion in public and private research and development.

For wind power, growth has been about 25-30 percent a year since 2000, with 93 GW in place in 2007 against just 7.5 GW in 1997.

"We keep saying it can't keep growing at this rate but it continues," Steve Sawyer, head of the Global Wind Energy Council, told a news conference.

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(Editing by Anthony Barker)

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