Trends Transforming Clean Energy Businesses
The global economic collapse hit the clean energy industry hard. New “green” technologies that already had difficulty securing loan guarantees from financial institutions prior to the economic downturn found it even more difficult over the last three years. However, the market is bouncing back as large-scale clean energy projects seem to be gaining investment and development resurfaces.
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Pike Research, a market research and consulting firm focusing on clean tech energy markets has identified the trends transforming the clean energy market:
- Revival of direct current (DC) transmission and distribution technologies
- China's rise as the most important global market for waste-to-energy power plants
- New rules for economies of scale, from huge wind turbines as large as 10 megawatts (MW) to small modular nuclear reactors that could power a shopping center or a business complex
- Greater diversification of technology choices in solar, including a resurgence of concentrated solar power (CSP) and concentrated solar PV (CPV)
- More product diversity in the wind power sector, both in terms of design and scale, including more vertical axis and two-bladed turbine designs and the increasing importance of mid-sized turbines (100 kW to 1 MW)
- The movement of power plants to marine sites, including the growth of offshore wind, hydrokinetic wave and tidal generators, and even floating solar photovoltaics (PV) on water-based sites
- Growth in geothermal generation, largely due to state renewable portfolio standards (RPS) in the western US
- Investor-owned utilities returning to ownership/development of new renewable generation projects
More trends and an in-depth look at the above trends can be found in Pike Research’s full report: "Clean Energy: Ten Trends to Watch in 2011 and Beyond"