2010 RANKINGS: China Races Past U.S. in Green $
It seemed like only yesterday that everyone on the Western side of the globe was tut-tutting about the PRC surpassing the United States as the worldâ€™s leading source of greenhouse gas emissions. We all assumed that with double-digit growth fueled by hundreds of coal-fired power plants, China would need a couple of decades of retooling before it appeared on anybodyâ€™s list of alternative energy leaders. Well, we all need to think again.
Chinaâ€™s investments in renewable energy in 2009 exceeded those made by the previous global leader, the United States, for the first time, according to a report by the Pew Charitable Trusts.
With its investments growing 50 percent in 2009, China committed $34.6 billion to wind power, solar energy and other forms of renewable energy, making it the wordâ€™s biggest investor in such projects. China invested nearly double the United Statesâ€™ $18.6 billion, while the United Kingdom, which has a much smaller population, was the third-largest investor with $11.2 billion in 2009.
The study of investments by G-20 nations also found that Chinaâ€™s installed renewable energy capacity surged to 52.5 gigawatts, putting it just behind the United Ststes, which had 53.4 gigawatts of capacity in 2009.
â€śChina is emerging as the worldâ€™s clean energy powerhouse,â€ť wrote the reportâ€™s authors. â€śHaving built a strong manufacturing base and export markets, China is working now to meet domestic demand by installing substantial new clean energy-generating capacity to meet ambitious renewable energy targets.â€ť