More significantly, the company reports, total investment for fiscal year 2014 increased 12 percent year-on-year to $274.2 billion, the highest annual investment volume since 2011.
“Last year the clean energy industry really demonstrated its resilience,” said Douglas Lloyd, CEO of Clean Energy Pipeline. “Despite a reduction in subsidies in Europe’s major renewable energy markets and very competitive natural gas prices in the US, investment in the global clean energy sector registered its first annual increase since 2011.”
Clean energy project finance totalled $47.4 billion in the fourth quarter of 2014, equating to a 23 percent increase on the $38.5 billion invested during the corresponding period in 2013. This contributed to new investment reaching $175 billion in 2014, the highest annual investment volume recorded since 2011.
The large increase was a direct result of a 15 percent increase in investment in both Europe and Asia. In Europe, a large proportion of the increase was due to the financial close of the 300 MW Cestas project in France, which will be Europe’s largest solar PV plant when operational.
Investment in the fourth quarter of 2014 was also bolstered by a number of billion dollar utility balance sheet investments in European offshore wind farms. Iberdrola commenced construction of the 350 MW Wikinger offshore wind farm representing an investment of $1.7 billion; Vattenfall and Stadtwerke München started work on the 288 MW Sandbank offshore wind farm representing a $1.5 billion investment; and DONG Energy started construction of the 258 MW extension of the existing 90 MW Burbo Bank offshore wind farm.
Other notable deals during the quarter included the $1 billion project financing of the Xina Solar One CSP plant located in South Africa and the $517 million project financing of the 180 MW Armow wind farm.
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