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2009 Silicon Valley Index Points to Clean Tech Uptick

Silicon Valley is feeling the economic downturn like other areas, but one bright spot has been the noticeable rise in clean tech investing, according to Joint Venture: Silicon Valley Network.

Investment in Silicon Valley’s clean tech sector jumped 94 percent from 2007 – reaching almost $1.9 billion in 2008, according to the 2009 Silicon Valley Index. In 2007, Silicon Valley accounted for 55 percent of clean tech investment in California and 31 percent incomputer-chip2 the whole United States. Most of the investment came in energy generation, followed by energy infrastructure, according to the index.

Since 1995, Silicon Valley clean technology and related businesses have grown in number by 29 percent. More importantly, since 1995 the sector has seen 88 percent job growth. That figure is up 23 percent since 2005.

Since 2005, clean tech subsectors have seen the following growth:

  • Green building (424 percent)
  • Transportation (140 percent)
  • Advanced materials (54 percent).

Of note, in 2008 Silicon Valley saw overall venture capital investment fall after rising steadily since 2005. Total venture capital investment in Silicon Valley dropped 7.7 percent from 2007 to 2008. Nationwide, such investment dropped 11.4 percent, according to the index.

Recently, Joint Venture released a “greenprint” for growing the area’s economy.

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