Clean Edge Releases Clean Energy Trends 2007


Yesterday, clean energy and technology research and publishing firm Clean Edge released its sixth annual Clean Energy Trends report. According to the report, as well as to company principals Ron Pernick and Joel Makower in a press conference yesterday, 2006 was another year that demonstrated that clean energy technologies, including wind and solar power, biofuels, and fuel cells, are on an "inexorable upward march." Growth and technological breakthroughs are now the norm:
We have reached the point where the steady and rapid growth of clean energy has become an old story. Each year, it seems, brings an ever-higher plateau of success. This appears to be the future of clean energy: a rolling series of technology breakthroughs, landmark corporate investments, industry consolidation, and the not-infrequent emergence of new and sometimes surprising players entering the field.
Below the fold, you'll find some of the numbers that made 2006 another banner year; additionally, Clean Edge's projections for the next ten years suggest that the best may be yet to come.According to the report, the four benchmark technologies for Clean Edge's research -- solar photovoltaics, wind power, biofuels and fuel cells -- posted a combined 39% jump in annual revenue. In ten years, however, that will be just a drop in the bucket:


Additionally, Rodrigo Prudencio, a partner in VC firm Nth Power, the report's lead sponsor, took note of a "flood" of venture capital pouring into energy tech startups in '06: $2.4 billion, which represents a 262% jump over 2005, and stands as second only to the year 2000 in energy technology investing. Prudencio noted that one of the most "curious" developments of the year involved VC investment in infrastructure: "Investors poured more than $1 billion into steel, cable, and concrete." This is curious because they don't carry the promise of high payoffs typical for projects that VCs normally back. Prudencio also addressed concerns about a clean tech "bubble," noting that the growth in deal size shows a realistic perspective on company valuations.

Finally, the report, as in past years, takes note of five trends worth watching:

For the details on these trends, download and read the report. In eighteen pages, Clean Edge argues convincingly (and pardon the cliche') that the future really is so bright, we have to wear shades. We're really looking forward to your thoughts and responses on this one. ::Clean Edge