Kate Mackenzie Clean energy investment in 2009: Spain is the winner, so far

The UK’s total investment in renewable energy has fallen sharply in 2009, research from New Energy Finance shows, which meant it fell in NEF’s international rankings from 5th place in 2008 to 15th place, behind Bulgaria and Peru. After investment of £2.5bn last year, the UK saw only £138m of investment in the first quarter of 2009.

The figures show it is Spain that has something to boast about; it has gone from second to first place, pushing aside the US, where congressional hearings on  a clean energy draft bill begin tomorrow.

There was scepticism from NEF that the UK would reach its target of achieving a 26 per cent reduction in emissions from 1990 levels by 2020, and from Cambridge Econometrics that the UK would reach its EU target of 15 per cent of energy coming from renewable sources by 2020. And this is despite the recession which is expected to take about 3 per cent per year off emissions with no effort from policymakers.

NEF was also doubted about the electric car subsidy announced last week, saying “few if any qualifying models will be available by then, and those that are look set to cost considerably more than the £5,000 above equivalent non-electric models”.