Utility-scale solar developments – both photovoltaic and CSP – have kept the US in second position, despite policy and market uncertainty blighting progress with wind power.
A widening range of low-carbon technologies, including offshore wind and concentrated solar power (CSP) are providing opportunities for global growth despite challenging market conditions, according financial consultants Ernst & Young.
China still leads the way in the company’s latest quarterly Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Indices, thanks in part to its development of shallow water offshore wind and a new five-year plan that targets over 11% of primary energy generation from renewable sources by 2015.
Meanwhile, utility-scale solar developments – both photovoltaic and CSP – have kept the US in second position, despite policy and market uncertainty blighting progress with wind power.
“The picture for renewable energy this quarter has undoubtedly been mixed,” says Ben Warren of Ernst & Young. “Global events have had a significant impact on attitudes to renewable energy, with increased impetus in favour of renewables in Japan, the Middle East and a number of developing economies.”
Most countries have retained their position in the ranking, but Brazil has moved up four places to 12th thanks to strong growth in the country’s wind market. Meanwhile, Morocco has entered the ranking at 27 on the back on its solar and wind resources and growing demand.
But Japan has fallen three places in the rankings in the wake of the earthquake and tsunami, which has stalled its nuclear sector. The country will need to resort to natural gas and oil imports in the near future, despite plans to develop renewables in the future. The UK has also suffered in the Ernst & Young ranking because of its ‘fast-track’ review of feed-in tariffs for solar power developments.