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Inflation erodes clean energy spending

Change in clean energy investment
Data: IEA; Chart: Nicki Camberg/Axios

Prices surging on everything from raw materials to finished solar panels, wind turbines and batteries are eating away at climate tech investment. And the power of U.S. and European currencies is eroding.

Why it matters: This is eating away at climate tech investment, per a new report from the International Energy Agency.

Driving the news: Energy investment is on track to rise 8% this year across all sectors. But about half that increase is being spent on higher costs — money that otherwise would go toward bringing new capacity online or reducing prices.

What's happening: "Costs are rising due to multiple supply chain pressures, tight markets for specialized labor and services, and the effect of higher energy prices on essential construction materials like steel and cement," IEA says.

By the numbers: Costs for solar panels and wind turbines are up as much as 20% since 2020.

Meanwhile: Oil, gas and coal investment continues to rise, though some of that is being driven by the ongoing pandemic recovery.

  • Plus, between the war in Ukraine and voters feeling crushed by sky-high energy prices, political leaders are scrambling for fast-seeming answers to restore energy supplies — meaning more oil, gas and even coal.
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