Adoption of solar power and microgrid technologies has been on the rise in frontier and growth markets. This trend results from declining equipment costs and increasing support from development funds, government programs, and impact investors. But there is much room to fill. There are as many as 1.1 billion people around the globe who still don’t have access to a reliable supply of electricity. Microgrids can help address the issue without expensive transmission and distribution infrastructure.
Beauty and nature are closely interlinked. But what will it take to make cosmetics production green? In this Q&A, Clean Energy Finance Forum explores how global beauty companies are embracing sustainability. This industry is making intensive use of solar power and energy efficiency – and directing corporate financing in that direction.
The performance of the Connecticut Green Bank shows clean energy can be economically lucrative and make good business sense. As a result of these accomplishments, the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation has selected the bank from 500 applicants for the 2017 Innovation in American Government Award. A public announcement took place in Hartford, Connecticut on July 27.
Is the sun rising on a new opportunity in Chicago that may fill the venture capital (VC) gap for clean energy startups? On Aug. 1, the United States Department of Energy (DOE) Innovative Pathways Program announced funding for 11 organizations that are advancing emerging technologies and leveraging private capital. Benjamin Gaddy, director of technology development at Clean Energy Trust, spoke with Clean Energy Finance Forum about the award his accelerator has received. He also said his team’s projects are bringing fresh energy to the regional and national market.
Today’s political, economic and social climate have made it increasingly difficult to keep abreast of all that is happening in the realm of renewables. In 0.56 seconds, a Google search for “renewable energy” will return roughly 3 million news headlines. As you peruse the top of the pile, you may be led to believe that the sector is in a downward spiral. But in the same sitting, you may also gain the impression that the industry is better than ever and is essentially unstoppable. In attempt to gain some clarity, Clean Energy Finance Forum interviewed the Head of Americas at Bloomberg New Energy Finance, Ethan Zindler.
When California diverges from federal viewpoints and policy on climate change and supports the Paris Agreement’s goals, Alan Gordon, its deputy state treasurer, leverages green bonds to yield results. California is one of the world’s six largest economies. The Golden State manages massive amounts of pension assets.
A number of senators and representatives led by Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and Rep. Elizabeth Esty (D-Conn.) have cosponsored The Green Bank Act of 2017 (PDF) (S. 1406. H.R. 2995). The act is expected to support the establishment of a national green bank capitalized with $10 billion in treasury-issued green bonds. This is the third time legislators have proposed it.
Energy storage for solar PV is a critically important technology because of its ability to resolve the primary drawback of solar power – namely, that the sun doesn’t shine all the time. Organizations such as Clean Energy Group (CEG) are leveraging software to advance these technologies as a means to expand energy resiliency and affordability.
Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) has recently merged with Solar Energy Finance Association and created the Solar Energy Finance Advisory Council (SEFAC), a new entity with the goal of facilitating wide-scale solar deployment by providing better access to capital.
Working to build a strong support system for financing energy efficiency and renewable energy requires a collaborative approach with all hands on deck. In the rocky seas of this year’s federal and state climate and energy policy, state and local green banks are emerging as a potentially protective anchor that policymakers can create. Yale Center for Business and the Environment is currently building a training program that will use a set of green banking case studies on innovative clean energy-finance structures that students developed last year. This week, the first case study is being published.
At a public event in Boston on June 11 called "Designing Solar’s Value: A Stakeholder’s Forum," speakers outlined an ambitious proposal to shift the entire framework of solar financing in Massachusetts to a value-of-solar model. The newly founded Northeast Solar Energy Market Coalition (NESEMC) cosponsored the event, which was hosted by Solar Energy Business Association of New England (SEBANE).
Greentech Media’s first international Solar Summit, held on Jan. 27-28 in Mexico City, left more questions than answers about the future of solar in Mexico. Speakers said that the solar markets are in flux at all levels of development. The country is far from reaching a steady state. Developers who are willing to take risks could enjoy huge payoffs but must first face significant regulatory uncertainty.
A joint committee of Massachusetts senators and representatives is approaching a decision on the future of solar power. The decision will determine how to modify net metering, an incentive policy that is critical to most solar projects' financial viability. Meanwhile, utilities are unable to plan for their systems and developers have been forced to ice projects at all stages.
While making strong motivational statements at the 2016 Investor Summit on Climate Risk in New York City on Jan. 27, speakers also laid forth an ambitious set of targeted goals to implement the Paris climate conference’s agenda. These goals included implementing climate disclosure requirements; advocating for stable, economically meaningful carbon pricing; ceasing investment in coal; leveraging pension funds; scaling up green banks; clarifying what constitutes a green bond; and analyzing risks on an industry-by-industry basis.
Eden Full Goh discovered the potential of solar power when she was just 10 years old. She had come across a book in the library that taught her how to build a small solar-powered car. Once she took the book home and built it, she was hooked. She wanted to see what else she could do with this...
They appear periodically, but predictably - media reports about the powerful, corporate utilities seeking to block consumer access to rooftop solar and maintain control of the grid versus the plucky, disruptive solar companies, fighting to bring clean, free power - and energy independence - to the...