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Reproduced from BloombergNEF; Chart: Axios Visuals 

A big rise in offshore wind power deals pushed global investment in new renewable power capacity in the first half of 2020 above the same period last year, new data shows.

Why it matters: It signals how the renewables sector as a whole has proven rather resilient to the pandemic, despite some declines in onshore wind and solar investment, BloombergNEF analysts said.

  • An International Energy Agency analysis in May showed COVID-19 isn't battering renewables as hard as oil-and-gas and other energy industries.
  • However, it's still taking a toll in the form of project slowdowns and layoffs.

By the numbers: Final investment decisions for offshore wind projects totaled $35 billion in the first half of 2020, which is over 300% more than the same period in 2019.

  • "The first half of this year saw investment decisions made on 28 sea-based wind farms, including the largest ever, the 1.5GW Vattenfall Hollandse Zuid array off the coast of the Netherlands, costing an estimated $3.9 billion," it states.

The big picture: Overall investment in new renewable power capacity (excluding large dams) totaled $132.4 billion in the first half of 2020, which is up 5% from the same period last year.

  • But onshore wind investment fell 21% and solar investment fell 12%.

Don't forget: The cost of renewables is declining, which means that each dollar invested brings more bang for the buck — so absolute investment levels do not tell the whole story.

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Oct 21, 2020 - Energy & Environment

A big renewables deal: Iberdrola's Avangrid to buy PNM Resources

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Avangrid, a subsidiary of Spanish energy giant Iberdrola, is buying the big New Mexico-based power company PNM Resources in a $4.3 billion deal.

Why it matters: The companies said the deal, valued at $8.3 billion including debt, will form the third-largest renewable power company in the United States.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Oct 21, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Poll shows strong backing for Biden's $2 trillion climate plan

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

A new poll of nearly 1,000 likely voters suggests Joe Biden would have political wind at his back on the proposal on climate change if he wins and Democrats take the Senate.

Why it matters: 66% of likely voters support a plan to spend $2 trillion on clean energy and climate efforts, per this New York Times/Siena College poll.

Biden to tap telecom trio for NTIA, FCC posts

Jessica Rosenworcel. Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call

President Joe Biden on Tuesday is expected to name Alan Davidson as head of the telecom arm of the Commerce Department, Jessica Rosenworcel as chairwoman of the Federal Communications Commission and Gigi Sohn as a commissioner at the FCC, according to a person familiar with the process.

Why it matters: Internet availability and affordability has been a key policy priority for the White House, but the administration lagged in tapping people for the agency posts that oversee the issues.

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