A record-breaking $243 billion was spent globally on clean energy investment in 2010, which represents a 30% increase from 2009 and double the amount spent in 2006, according to a Bloomberg New Energy Finance report released yesterday. Wind and solar power, as well as energy-smart technologies like electric vehicles and power storage, all saw a boost in investment dollars, which Michael Liebreich, chief executive of Bloomberg New Energy Finance, lauds as a huge achievement. “It flies in the face of scepticism about the clean energy sector among public market investors, who have been concerned about the sustainability of subsidy programs in Europe, the failure of the Obama administration to deliver a climate or an energy deal, and the crescendo of ill?informed doubts about climate change,” Liebreich said. China and Europe were the main drivers in last year’s clean energy push with investment in China up 30% to $51.1 billion, by far the largest figure for any country. Small-scale generation projects like rooftop solar panels surged by 91% in 2010 to $59.6 billion, largely in Germany but also in the U.S., Czech Republic, Italy and elsewhere. “We have been saying for some time that the world needs to reach a figure of $500 billion per annum investment in clean energy if we are to see carbon emissions peak by 2020,” Liebreich said. “What we are seeing in these figures for the first time is that we are half?way there, and it is very good news.” While this surge in clean energy investment is positive, Liebreich does point out that 2010’s growth was spurred by government intervention, particularly in China and Europe. He suggests that the industry needs to continue to drive down costs to reduce reliance on this type of support so that the global community can eventually thrive on these alternative energy solutions. Find out how you can hasten the transition to a clean energy future by learning more about Carbonfund.org’s renewable energy, energy efficiency and reforestation projects.