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The non-profit independent group, the Pew Charitable Trust released a March 29, 2011 report entitled, Who’s Winning the Clean Energy Race. In that report, the U.S. was ranked third behind China and Germany. This represents a trend as last year’s report showed the U.S. dropping from first to second place on the list.
The report suggests the biggest reason for the drop is a lack of a clear energy policy in the U.S. That lack has hurt investment in products such as wind and solar energy. The latest comprehensive energy bill died in the Senate last July. Additionally, the congress failed to pass legislation requiring minimum volumes of clean energy production by utilities.
While private investment in clean energy was up 51 percent in the U.S. to $34 billion in the last year, China spent $54.5 billion and Germany spent $41.2 billion. However, Germany also noted a spur in investment as the government announced it would be scaling back on tariff support for clean energy.
President Obama is set to announce a new energy plan today, March 30, 2011. He is set to outline a reduction in oil imports of at least 30 percent over the next 10 years. At the same time, domestic production and a push to increase renewable energy and adoption of natural gas among other programs will increase our usage of clean energy.