2008 was a great year for clean technology and saw some huge victories that will benefit green energy and the exchange traded funds (ETFs) that track the sector.

Katie Fehrenbacher of Gigaom.com cites the top 10 for 2008 as:

  • The passing of the Renewable Energy Investment Tax Credit
  • Victory for President-elect Obama, who bleeds green – he has pledged $150 billion in clean power over the next decade
  • Record amounts of investing by venture firms in the cleantech industry
  • The moving forward of U.S. Solar Plants: Utility companies have become a lot more aggressive in signing contracts with solar companies to meet renewable portfolio guidelines
  • The drop in the price of solar technology- First Solar (FSLR) has reached the point where photovoltaic electricity is as cheap as conventional electric power
  • Mainstream tech companies such as Google (GOOG) and Intel (INTC) went green and invested heavily in clean energy
  • Electric Vehicle start-up Better Place signed deals with Israel, Denmark, Australia, Hawaii and the California Bay Area giving hope to electric transportation
  • The surge in wind turbine construction making the United States the leader in wind electricity generation
  • The formation of plans suggesting the use of technology to fight global warming
  • High gas prices enabled electric vehicle plans to emerge and form the building blocks of a new trend.

While the United States has made advances in clean energy, the funds below show that the sector was not without its struggles this year. What will 2009 bring? Good things, we hope.

Some ETFs that may have been influenced by the aforementioned victories include

  • First Trust NASDAQ Clean Edge US Liquid (QCLN): down 67.82% year-to-date

Alternative Energy ETFs

  • PowerShares Cleantech Portfolio (PZD): down 52.1% year-to-date


Alternative Energy ETF

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.