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Key emerging markets attract record $126 billion in clean energy investment

Latest Climatescope study from the Inter-American Development Bank’s Multilateral Investment Fund and Bloomberg New Energy Finance shows 2014 clean energy activity mainly occurred in developing countries, led by China, Brazil and Chile

Developing nations attracted more clean energy power generation investment in 2014 than ever, according to Climatescope 2015, a country-by-country assessment, interactive report, and index of clean energy activity in 55 emerging markets in Latin America and the Caribbean, Africa, and Asia.

Climatescope, released today, finds that new investment in clean energy capacity in the surveyed countries soared in 2014, hitting a record annual high of $126 billion—up 39 percent from 2013 levels. For the first time ever, over half of the world’s new annual investment into clean energy power generation went toward projects in emerging markets.

Climatescope's key findings include:

  • The top ten: China, Brazil, Chile, South Africa, India, Kenya, Mexico, Uruguay, Uganda, and Nepal.
  • Remarkable growth in China, which added 35 gigawatts (GW) of renewable power-generating capacity– more than the annual clean energy built in the US, UK, and France combined.
  • Continuing declines in clean energy costs appear to be driving growth, with costs associated with solar photovoltaic power having reduced 15 percent year-on-year globally.
  • A total of 50.4 GW of new clean energy capacity was built in Climatescope countries, 7.7 GW in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC), marking a 21 percent increase (25 percent in LAC) from the prior year, and topping for the first time the renewable energy capacity deployed in more developed Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) nations.
  • Latin America and the Caribbean boasts higher clean energy penetration than any other region assessed. As of year-end 2014, 11 percent of the 352 GW installed there is from biomass, wind, small hydro, solar, and geothermal projects. When large hydro plants are included, over half (56 percent) of the region’s power comes from non-CO2-emitting sources.
  • In several countries in LAC, wind and solar projects have reached “grid parity,” meaning they are the best, lowest-cost option for new power generation.
  • Explanations for the high renewables penetration in LAC include exceptional natural resources and supportive policy frameworks that incentivize clean energy investment.

The Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF) of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group, the UK Government Department for International Development (DFID), and the US Agency for International Development (USAID), under President Barack Obama’s “Power Africa” initiative, commissioned Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) to assess prospects for solar, wind, small hydro, geothermal, biomass, and other zero-carbon emitting technologies (excluding large hydro). Climatescope provides potential investors with important information on countries with the greatest clean energy investment opportunities.

Climatescope was first developed in 2012 by the IDB/MIF and BNEF, and initially focused exclusively on 26 LAC countries. In 2014, with support from DFID and USAID, it was expanded to include 19 countries in Africa and 10 in Asia, as well as 15 provinces in China and 10 states in India.

A country’s ranking depends upon its clean energy investment policy, its market conditions, the structure of its power sector, the number and makeup of local companies operating in clean energy, and efforts toward reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. The final output is the most comprehensive source for decision makers to learn more about the market conditions for clean energy in these regions.

All of the research is available at, which includes an interactive tool for users to pinpoint specific information, from the most granular country details to specific sector analysis.

About the IDB

The Inter-American Development Bank is devoted to improving lives. Established in 1959, the IDB is a leading source oflong-term financing for economic, social and institutional development in Latin America and the Caribbean. The IDB also conducts cutting-edge research and provides policy advice, technical assistance and training to public and private sector clients throughout the region. The Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF), a member of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group, is funded by 39 donors and supports private sector-led development benefitting low-income populations and the poor - their businesses, their farms, and their households.

About Bloomberg New Energy Finance

Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) provides analysis, tools and data for decision makers driving change in the energy system. BNEF has 200 staff based in 14 offices around the world. BNEF’s sectoral products provide financial, economic and policy analysis, as well as news and the world’s most comprehensive database of assets, investments, companies and equipment in the clean energy space. BNEF’s regional products provide a comprehensive view on the transformation of the energy system by region.

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