New financial investment in clean energy suffered its weakest quarter in the first three months of this year since the worst of the financial crisis two years ago, according to a North American Windpower article. Citing figures from Bloomberg New Energy Finance, the article reports that new financial investment worldwide in the first quarter of 2011 totaled $31.1 billion, down by a third from the record $47.1 billion recorded in the fourth quarter of last year. The first-quarter 2011 results were also down 10 percent from the first quarter of 2010.

According to the report, weaker investment was the result, in large part, of policy uncertainties in Europe, including in Italy, Spain, France and the U.K. Low natural-gas prices in the U.S. also played a role. Investors may also have had a "pause for breath" after their rush to close deals in the closing months of 2010, according to the report.