As Ontario renewable energy investment gets set to kick into high gear, the rest of the world downshifts:

This year has not been a good one for renewable energy, despite promises by politicians all round the globe to make it the centrepoint of economic recovery.

Vestas chief executive Ditlev Engel began 2009 by warning that the economic downturn had left it with a 15% excess in global manufacturing capacity (…)

Analysts at Goldman Sachs, however, were already warning that “the most important theme in 2009 within the alternative energy space will be a move from severe under-supply to one of at least a more balanced market and potentially serious oversupply.”

The first big hurdle for wind cropped up in March, with oil company Shell pulling out of wind, solar and hydro power because it felt they were not economic. It said it would concentrate instead on cleaner ways of using fossil fuels, such as carbon capture and sequestration technology.