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Venture Capital Investments in Clean Tech Ramps Up

Venture Capital Investments in Clean Tech Ramps Up

Tesla workers cheer for one of the first Tesla Model S cars sold, seen here at the Tesla factory in Fremont, Calif., June 22. Op-ed contributors John Rogers and David Friedman say 'clean tech is on the rise nationwide in large part due to federal investment.' Yes, 'there are risks when government and industry invest boldly in new technology. But if they don’t, America will cede its leadership on [clean tech] to other nations like China...' Paul Sakuma/AP/File

Tesla workers cheer for one of the first Tesla Model S cars sold, seen here at the Tesla factory in Fremont, Calif., June 22. Op-ed contributors John Rogers and David Friedman say ‘clean tech is on the rise nationwide in large part due to federal investment.’ Yes, ‘there are risks when government and industry invest boldly in new technology. But if they don’t, America will cede its leadership on [clean tech] to other nations like China…’
Paul Sakuma/AP/File

As venture capital investment in clean-tech surpasses the US$1 billion mark this year a surge in green jobs for the U.S. economy is also expected. According to a quarterly PwC/NVCA MoneyTree™ Report supported by data from Thomson Reuters, investments in clean-tech deals were up 26 percent over the fourth quarter of 2010.  The amount of deals completed increased by 11 percent a good sign for job seekers looking for green jobs.

Clean-tech investments have surpassed $1 billion on four occasions since MoneyTree started publishing clean-tech history reports in 1995.   This quarter saw 69 venture capital deals in clean-tech totaling $1,038,109,700. The closing of many substantial clean-tech transactions drove the increase.  The largest clean-tech recipients of venture capital investment included:

  • BrightSource Energy ($201,700,000)
  • Fisker Automotive ($111,900,000)
  • SoloPower ($78,600,000)
  • Coda Automotive ($76,400,000)
  • Fulcrum BioEnergy ($75,000,000)
  • Harvest Power ($51,7000,000)

Clean-tech firm BrightSource Energy which just received Bureau of Land Management permits to build solar farms in California is currently fulfilling green jobs in construction and engineering. Harvest Power, which drew attention from former Vice President Al Gore’s investment management company, can transform bio waste and is currently fulfilling green jobs in accounting, finance, project management, and engineering according to their website.

By John Courtney

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