Although venture capitalists have taken a battering in the renewables sector, as seen in the sorry Solyndra saga, investors continue to see value in smart grid investments, biofuels and electric vehicles.

But the stakes are usually high, the capital costs expensive and the path to profit unclear in uncertain political and economic times in the US. But the gains for the US economy are clear.

Although venture capital represents just 0.2% of US GDP, venture-funded companies account for nearly 17% of GDP, according to the National Venture Capital Association. So it’s in the interest of investors and the US government to keep deal flow moving.