Adequate transmission — building transmission to accommodate renewable energy, for instance — is an important component, as is energy storage, in integrating renewable energy sources to the grid, according to Lori Bird, senior analyst with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).
In integrating renewable energy to the electric grid, the United States has a unique opportunity to assess lessons learned in Europe and not replicate the disequilibrium that has occurred overseas to consumers, power producers and capital markets, according to Jeffrey Altman, senior advisor, Finadvice GmbH.
Alternative energy mutual funds and ETFs have pulled back from some of the fantastic gains seen in 2013. There is a saying in the investment world that “as goes January, so goes the year.” Is it time to bail on this sector, or on stocks in general? Perhaps, but wise long-term alternative energy investors should avoid rash steps at this juncture.
European Union governments and the bloc’s executive arm are splitting over how to guarantee electricity supply as the region builds more renewable power.
The stock market has had a rough five weeks since I introduced my annual Ten Clean Energy Stocks model portfolio on December 27th. My broad market benchmark (the iShares Russell 2000 index) is down 5.6% for the period. Clean energy stocks fared better, with the Powershares WilderHill Clean Energy ETF (NYSE:PBW) down only 0.5% as I write. My model portfolio of ten clean energy stocks is up 0.9% in local currency terms, but the weak Canadian dollar (down 3.5%) and Euro (down 1.5%) turned this into a US dollar decline of 1.0%.
Del Mar, population ~4,100, is an affluent beach city just north of San Diego. Solana Beach, also on the ocean and just north of Del Mar has ~12,000 residents. Carmel Valley is a master-planned adjoining community with a population of ~40,000. Can Del Mar, Solana Beach, and Carmel Valley each have their own micro-electric utility (MEU), providing cleaner, cheaper, and more reliable power than the current San Diego Gas and Electric (SDG&E)? Can Carmel Valley have four or five MEUs, and the city of San Diego one hundred?
Broader domestic social issues and an international policy that moves away from "a permanent war footing" took center stage in President Obama's State of the Union address (SOTUS) last night. Domestic energy policies, including renewable energy, largely took a back seat to the President's bigger talking points: hiking the minimum wage for federal contractors, urging final immigration reforms, strong pushes in employment and job-training, education, retirement savings, and healthcare.
Washngton, D.C. non-profit The Solar Foundation just released its National Solar Jobs Census 2013, whichis the fourth annual update of current employment and projected growth in the United States solar industry. Their data for Census 2013 is derived from a statistically valid sampling and comprehensive survey of 15,437 employers throughout the nation.
The European Union is poised to take its first formal steps to expand the world’s most ambitious limits on fossil fuel pollution. That may widen a rift in how it balances green policies with the need for cheaper power.
Once again flexing its investment muscles in renewable energy, Google is expanding its future purchasing plans for wind energy in Finland and taking a stake in another a Texas wind farm. Oh, and it also bought some home energy automation startup called Nest Labs.
Several reports this week agree that cleantech investments fell in 2013, but that's not a bad thing. And the big question is what happens next: how much more is needed?
For years, climate contrarians have pointed to snowfall and cold weather to question the scientific reality of human-induced climate change.
PensionDanmark A/S and other Danish pension investors backed a state fund to finance emission-reduction projects in developing countries as the Scandinavian nation seeks to export its climate know-how abroad.
As a new year begins for the clean tech industry, maturation is a theme that comes to mind. And if we think of clean tech not only as a growing global industry, but as a fundamental global transition — as so many of its leaders and participants do — we can chart its progress along Gandhi’s oft-cited dictum of other transitions in history. I’m not suggesting that the growth of clean tech is an exact analog to India’s struggle for independence from Great Britain; that would be quite presumptuous on many levels. But with renewable and distributed energy as a metaphorical threat to decades-old entrenched ways of doing things, there are parallels to be made.
Listening to last weekend’s 60 Minutes, I felt I was watching a Saturday Night Live sketch on parallel universes. The bash fest by Leslie Stahl seemed like it was co-written by the Koch Brothers, lead funders of climate denier organizations and Keystone XL pipeline advocacy groups.
The first Farm Bill was introduced in 1933 for the overall purpose of ensuring that everyone had enough to eat, farmers earned a living, and that the soil and water stayed healthy. A new Farm Bill is written, debated and passed every five to seven years. Since 1933 15 different versions of the Farm Bill have passed. The 2008 Farm Bill, called the Food, Conservation and Energy Act, authorized $289 billion in spending over five years.
I've been creating model portfolios of clean energy stocks since 2008. At first, it was just a list, but in 2009 I started tracking it as a model portfolio for a small stockmarket investor. With the exception of last year, clean energy stocks have had fairly miserable returns, as measured by my sector benchmark, specified at the start of each year. I've been using the Powershares Wilderhill Clean Energy ETF (PBW) for all but the first couple years. I plan to continue using PBW going forward, since it is the most widely held sector ETF, and so is a good measure of how the average clean energy investor might do over the course of the year.
Here at RenewableEnergyWorld.com, we pride ourselves on our active community of readers who click, share, and comment on the articles that we post every day. While we don’t always agree with their take on the pieces we post, we always value constructive feedback and the high quality discussion that sometimes ensues.
As editors we delight in learning which of the stories that we wrote or commissioned were most popular with our readers. That’s why at the end of each calendar year, we pull reports that tell us which stories we posted got the most shares, the most views, the most comments, etc. We also look at which videos were watched the most. Often, we post articles that we know will be a big hit: like explanations of controversial solar legislation. But other times you surprise us, readers, by taking great interest in articles that we felt were solid but not necessarily ground-breaking.
For those clamoring for (and against) the year-end-expiring legislation, and anyone in favor of some tax-code simplification, today the government has offered an early holiday present: proposed reform for some key areas including the production tax credit (PTC) and investment tax credit (ITC).