Just when it seemed like investor interest in clean energy couldn’t get much stronger, a newly released report from Clean Edge forecast that revenues in four key sectors will triple over the next decade.

The revenues in the biofuel, wind-power,solar-photovoltaic and fuel-cell sectors shot up to $74 billion in 2007, a 40-percent increase from $55 billion in 2006. Moreover, the Clean Edge report projected that revenues in those sectors will mushroom to reach an estimated $254.5 billion in 2017.

Last week was no different -- a number of solar and biofuel companies captured a pretty penny, as detailed below. Outside the solar and biofuel industries, this week also saw federal and local governments putting money into greentech endeavors:

Private

  • Range Fuels, a Colorado-based developer of cellulosic-ethanol technology, raised a whopping $100 million in new funding, according to VentureWire (see Range Fuels Fills Up on $100M). The company received $25 million from an unlisted investor and another $25 million from Khosla Ventures, a prior investor.
  • Los Alamos Renewable Energy, based in New Mexico, received a $20 million investment from an undisclosed Silicon Valley-based firm along with local venture-capital firm Sun Mountain Capital, according to Venture Beat. The company, which will soon be called Sundrop Fuels, uses sunlight to create hydrogen, which could potentially be used as an alternative to solar-thermal.
  • Coskata, an Illinois-based developer of cellulosic-ethanol technology, raised $19.5 million in a second round of funding, according to a regulatory filing, with backers including Khosla Ventures and Globespan Capital Partners. Earlier this year, Coskata announced a partnership with General Motors. The company hopes to produce cellulosic ethanol at half the price of oil-based gasoline.

Public

  • Nitol Solar, a Russian polysilicon producer, and Suntech Power, a Chinese solar-module provider, announced a deal in which Suntech will acquire up to $100 million of Nitol shares, which is a minority interest. A few days earlier, Suntech said it would offer $425 million in convertible senior notes in a private offering to "qualified institutional buyers," and anticipated using $300 million of the proceeds to expand its production capacity.
  • The state of California introduced $394 million in funding for transit projects that include fuel-cell, hybrid and natural-gas buses, as well as infrastructure improvements and upgrades to the electric-powered Bay Area Rapid Transit system.
  • The U.S. Department of Energy said it would invest $13.7 million over the next three years for 11 university-led projects to develop advanced solar-photovoltaic technology products and manufacturing processes.