An interesting stat, (and less face it, stats don’t get much more interesting than this), courtesy of Newsweek: ten per of VC money going into China is spent on green tech, third behind IT and communications. Wow.
Newsweek sums up the environmental hero-environmental villain question nicely here:
If the current trajectory holds true, cleantech’s share of VC funds will only grow — to as much as 40 percent within the next investment cycle, reportedly. Within the first three quarters of 2007, eastern China landed a spot among the world’s top-10 regions in terms of cleantech investment. It is the only region to do so in the developing world—and next to Western Europe, the only one outside the U.S.
China’s expected to overtake the U.S. as the leading global emitter of greenhouse gases by the time the Olympics take place — a decade sooner than expected. And many 2007 goals for cleaning up pollution and promoting sustainable development have not been met.
Meanwhile, other developing nations are looking for a few greenbacks to help them get on with green tech. Take Uganda, for example, all the sun you need for solar, not enough cash to buy the panels. AP:
Uganda relies on hydropower for almost all of its electricity. But droughts in recent years have cut the supply, forcing people chop down trees for firewood. That’s why Mutagamba, the environment minister, is so interested in solar power.
“We’re still importing everything,” said Mutagamba, explaining why solar panels are so expensive in her country. “When there’s no electricity, then the people go and cut the forests.”