With the inauguration of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, investors in clean tech and renewable energy believe they have an ally in Washington that will expedite renewable energy adoption. Biden has pledged to rejoin the Paris climate accord and to link the economic recovery to grappling with climate change.
Some of his goals can be accomplished via Executive Order, such as reinstating the clean water and air regulations loosened by the previous administration. But some goals will need Congressional support. One of Biden’s top goals is to reverse the previous administration’s support of fossil fuels and push for faster development of solar and wind power.
In spite of the previous administration’s support of the US coal and petroleum industries, the shift to investments in renewables started during Trump’s administration. Investors are seeing a growth in available fossil fuels, but a flattening of demand for them. Oil and gas stocks have taken a hit through the final three quarters of 2020, while renewable energy stocks have been rising.
The awareness of global climate change issues has made the alternative energy sector much more appealing to investors. This is more than a US issue, as pointed out by Jay Jacobs, Senior VP and head of research and strategy at Global X ETFs. “It’s important to remember this is a global theme, so it’s not just being driven by the United States or even at the federal level,” he said. The U.K., France, China and other nations are aiming to reduce their carbon footprint or be carbon neutral by 2050. Regulatory bodies all over the world are switching away from internal combustion engines to cleaner forms of energy.
According to Bloomberg New Energy Finance, by 2030 the Americas (North, Central and South America) will see a rise in renewable energy electricity to 28%, up from 7% in 2012 and coal-fired capacity will fall from 21% to 9% in that timeframe. Solar and wind power will be a large part of the increase in renewables. The price for renewable energy is competitive with fossil fuels and will continue to improve as the technology continues to improve.
The jobs created by renewable energy will be key to the economic recovery in the United States. Businesses investing in renewable energy sources will enable renewables to push the economic recovery in a positive direction.
The next four years will be better for renewable energy than the last four. But whether or not the Biden administration is successful with all of their initiatives, the pendulum is already swinging towards renewable energy, and investors are along for the profitable ride.