Cleantech investments were up 83 percent year-over-year in Q1 2010, and were 29 percent higher than Q4 2009, according to initial figures from the Cleantech Group. $1.9 billion was invested, according to preliminary Q1 results.

It was another record-setting quarter for number of deals, beating last quarter’s previous record of 165 deals.

“The first quarter’s bounce back in terms of venture capital investment compared to 2009’s early lows bodes well for what we think is in store for the remainder of the year,” said the Cleantech Group’s President Sheeraz Haji.

Eighty-one percent of this quarter’s cleantech investment activity took place in North America. “North America was particularly dominant this quarter,” said Haji.

It was the highest percentage for North America in three years.

Transportation and energy efficiency are the top sectors to watch, said Haji, who noted that electric-battery swapping company BetterPlace secured the second largest deal that the Cleantech Group has ever seen, receiving $350 million in Series B this January.

There were 13 IPOs in the quarter totaling $1.5 billion. This is less than Q4 2009, which saw 18 IPOs totaling $2.9 billion. Haji believes that most possible IPOs are holding off until the second or third quarter of this year.

By Mark Alvarez