A new report, “Economic Impacts of Advanced Energy,” from Advanced Energy Economy and Pike Research shows that the umbrella of advanced energy, which includes solar, wind, electric vehicles, energy efficiency and more, was a $1.16 trillion global market in 2011, eclipsing many other large global industries. than pharmaceutical manufacturing worldwide. It was also a significant portion of the U.S.’s economy generating $132 billion in revenue in 2011 alone, with more growth on expected for 2012 and beyond.
“Globally advanced energy is larger than the pharmaceutical manufacturing industry in revenue,” said AEE Chief Researcher Matt Stanberry. “In the U.S. it's larger than the trucking industry and its over two times the size of the commercial casino market. So its not a fanciful imagination of a future industry, but a big industry today with a lot of companies today producing real value for customers.” He added that it’s also an innovative market with a lot of real potential for growth across all its segments, buildings, industry and transportation.
The report was also conservatively biased, according to Stanberry. “One of the things that we find really exciting is we know this estimate is conservative. We're defining a new industry space and that space contains a lot of exciting and innovative market segments that are rapidly evolving. As such they have limited data availability,” he said. Which means the figures could be higher.
According to the report, the U.S. advanced energy market was expected to grow by 19 percent in 2012, from $132.0 billion in 2011 to an estimated $157.0 billion in 2012. At the same time, the U.S.‘s share of the global advanced energy market is expected to rise from 12 percent to 15 percent, showing it’s becoming a more important revenue and employment sector.
In particular, advanced electric generation in the U.S. is expected to generate $4.7 billion more in 2012 than in 2011. That growth was fostered chiefly by wind, which was blown forward by the anticipated sunset of the Production Tax Credit (which was recently extended to the end of 2013).
Globally among electric generation, the largest subsegment was hydropower, which made $257 billion in revenues in 2011, according to the report. Solar was the second biggest segment with $113.2 billion in revenues and wind third with $67.1 billion in revenues.