Has the downturn in the economy affected green issues?

During the so called boomtimes many of the green industries were begining to gather pace.  We saw excellent growth in the solar industry, the rainwater harvesting industry, wind and insulation areas.  Some driven by government subsidies and others by consumer choice.

2008-present

Of course we have seen a large downturn in the world economy in the last two/three years and how this is afffecting the fore-mentioned is perhaps too early to tell.  Solar PV is racing ahead in the UK due to the FIT scheme.  But “normal” markets are being driven down by over-capacity of suppliers, who emerged during the boom times.  Which is good for the consumers, as green technologies and even consumer goods were often sold at a premium.  Premium prices for green products and services has always been seen as a barrier to rapid uptake.  However, falling margins for green companies will spell danager, as this might lead to lower competitiion, but more importantly, reduced innovation.  Innovation is absolutely necessary to advance both technologies and consumer products, but importantly bring them to market.

Consumer data is begining to show that shoppers are looking for ways to reduce bills and forget their green ideas.  Whether this will continue or whether the suppliers will find ways to bring their eco-products to market is clearly something to watch.