Renewable Energy Deals Surged 40 Percent in 2011, Report Says

The value of renewable energy deals worldwide increased 40 percent in 2011, as solar, wind, and energy efficiency investments surpassed hydropower for the first time, a new report says. According to a report by PriceWaterHouse Coopers, deals for renewable energy reached $53.5 billion last year, compared with $38.2 billion in 2010, a rate of growth that reflects a maturing market. While hydropower projects have historically dominated deal flow in the renewable energy sector, wind, solar, biomass and energy efficiency outnumbered hydro seven to one in 2011, the report said. “The trend is all the more noteworthy given the uncertainy in the market and in government policies on renewables,” Paul Nillesen. PwC’s renewables partner, told Reuters. “We believe that deal flow will continue to be significant in the medium term.” In the U.S., energy developers installed 6,810 megawatts of new wind capacity in 2011 — 31 percent more than in 2010 — as the industry sought to capitalize on an expiring federal tax grant, according to a separate report.