Socially responsible investors who want to clean up their portfolios with clean energy exchange traded funds (ETFs) should focus their attention on what’s inside the fund, rather than the name.

Richard Asplund for The Street reports that investors should focus their attention on the larger clean energy players – those with the best technology and those that are in a good position for mass production – to drive prices lower in the near future. These will be the companies that are able to capture the consumers who are interested in clean energy, making it available for the masses.

PowerShares WilderHill Clean Energy (PBW) has $1.3 billion in assets and holds companies such as FuelCell Energy (FCEL), First Solar (FSLR), and Ormat Technologies (ORA). If a global angle is what inspires you, then the PowerShares Cleantech Portfolio (PZD) will take you there. Once again there is First Solar, Siemens (SI), and Corning (GLW).

The demand for clean energy has never been stronger, and the need will keep growing. As climate change creeps up on the world, so will a new generation of people, with the ever-growing population and middle class widening, globally. World energy demand is predicted to grow 57% by 2030, and $4 trillion of new power generation assets will be needed along side that, so says the International Energy Agency, and U.S. Department of Energy.

PBW is down 35.5% year-to-date, while PZD is down 12%.

The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.