Global trends in renewable energy investment 2015

Report from UNEP-Frankfurt School analyses the 17% rebound in investment last year

London and New York, 31 March – Global Trends in Renewable Energy Investment 2015 is the eighth edition of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) report. Based on data from Bloomberg New Energy Finance, it has become the world's foremost reference document on renewable energy investment, and for the examination of trends by region, country, sector and investment type.

The report, commissioned by the Frankfurt School-UNEP Collaborating Centre, can be downloaded from

The 86-page document is packed full of information on the deals, issues and policy moves that lay behind the 17% rebound in world renewable energy investment to $270.2bn in 2013 – the first increase for three years. Including no fewer than 59 charts, it finds that renewable power excluding large hydro increased its share of total world electricity generation from 8.5% in 2013, to 9.1%. The report discusses the potential impact on renewables of the oil price fall, and the encouraging trends on the cost of generation from wind and solar.

There is also a special chapter entitled "Structural challenges in the electricity system", which examines new barriers facing renewables such as grid access charges for owners of small-scale solar, and old barriers such as the entrenched position of national power monopolies in some developing countries. It also looks at new challenges created by the rising shares of wind and solar in the generation mix in many developed economies.

The Global Trends report cites statistics on renewable energy investment. These differ from Bloomberg New Energy Finance's clean energy investment total published earlier this year, because clean energy includes not only renewables but also energy smart technologies such as smart grid, efficiency, advanced transportation and power storage.

Bloomberg New Energy Finance plans to publish statistics for clean energy investment in the first quarter of 2015 in the coming days.

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