LONDON (Reuters) - The United States overtook Germany as the biggest producer of wind power last year, new figures showed, and will likely take the lead in solar power this year, analysts said on Monday.
Even before an expected "Obama bounce" from a new President who has vowed to boost clean energy, U.S. wind power capacity surged 50 percent last year to 25 gigwatts (GW) -- enough to power more than five million homes.
Political and business leaders worldwide have urged "green growth" spending on clean energy to fight both recession and climate change.
German wind power capacity reached nearly 24 GW, placing it second ahead of Spain and fourth-placed China, which doubled its installed wind power for the forth year running, said the Brussels-based Global Wind Energy Council.
"Governments must send a strong and unequivocal signal that the age of fossil fuels is over," said Steve Sawyer, secretary general of GWEC.
There is no reason at this point to build another coal or nuclear plant in this country. We can meet all new demands with renewable energy sources and start to phase out coal.