China keeps top spot in Ernst & Young Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Indices
On May 26th, 2011, Ernst & Young released the latest edition of its global “Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Indices”, which states that China remains by far the most promising location to pursue future renewable energy business opportunities.
The report places the United States in second place and India in third, as well as stating that nations around the world are increasingly broadening the scope of their renewable energy portfolios amid “challenging market conditions”.
“It is clear that the solar sector faces both challenges and growth opportunities,” observes Ernst & Young Global Cleantech Leader Gil Forer. “This is a good time for solar companies to continue to focus on cost reduction efforts, supply chain efficiencies, risk management and capital management.”
China scores high on wind, PV
China has held top position since August 2010, and earned its highest score ever during the quarter. China scored particularly high on its wind index, but also on solar PV.
Ernst & Young states that the China’s latest five-year plan is its “greenest” to date, including a target of 11.3% of primary energy generated by non-fossil fuels by 2015.
Lower incentive levels, restricted access to capital limit wind, solar development
The report also notes a chilling effect that the global financial climate has had on renewable energy markets, noting that some sectors, such as solar, have fared better than wind or biomass.
Ernst & Young states that apart from Brazil, which increased four places, most nations have dropped slightly in scores, as the result of diminishing incentives and restricted access to capital.
CSP, offshore wind providing new opportunities
The United States remained in second place in the report, on the strength of solar CSP, solar PV and onshore wind potential. Ernst & Young states that the nation’s utility scale solar sector remains “healthy”.
The report also notes that the increasing commercial viability of different technologies including offshore wind and concentrated solar power (CSP) provide new opportunities.
Report an assessment of future potential
It is important to note that this report was not an assessment of progress in renewable energy, but rather of future business potential.
For example, the relatively low score of Denmark (#22) represents a restricted grid capacity and reduced tariff levels following installation of the greatest per-capita wind capacities in the world.