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Finance

Echelon Ditches the Smart Grid to Focus on the Internet of Things

August 30, 2014 by Jeff St. John

As the smart meter market has hit the doldrums, we’ve seen a number of grid networking players start to look for opportunities in the “internet of things,” or IOT for short -- a broad term that can include everything from smart street lights and building controls to IT-enabled industrial equipment and medical devices.[read more]

Musings on the Second Great Recovery Experiment and the Promise of Natural Gas: Interview with Ron Muhlenkamp

August 30, 2014 by Jim Patrick

Recovery and Energy Investment

Ron Muhlenkamp is the founder and portfolio manager of Muhlenkamp & Co. Inc., established in 1977 to manage private accounts for individuals and institutions. In 1988, the company launched a no-load mutual fund as an investment vehicle for all investors, large or small.[read more]

Update on US Natural Gas, Coal, Nuclear, and Renewables

August 28, 2014 by Gail Tverberg
7

Fuel, Electricity, and the US

United States natural gas production leveled off in 2013, because of the low level of US natural gas prices. In 2013, there was growth in gas production in Pennsylvania in the Marcellus, but many other states, including Texas, saw decreases in production.[read more]

SolarWorld Wins Trade Case, But Faces Sliding Stock, Faulty Lug Recall, and More

August 28, 2014 by Eric Wesoff

SolarWorld Successes and Difficulties

In June, the Department of Commerce found in favor of petitioner SolarWorld in that company's trade case against Chinese solar module makers. The preliminary decision imposed significant tariffs on Chinese solar modules in the anti-dumping portion of this case.[read more]

Tesla Trumps Toyota 3: Why Electric Vehicles Are Beating Hydrogen Cars Today

August 27, 2014 by Joseph Romm
5

Tesla and Toyota

While electric vehicles have experienced a marketplace renaissance in the last decade, hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles have not. Multiple models of EVs (like the Tesla and Nissan Leaf) and plug-in EVs (like the Chevy Volt) are selling in this country and around the world, but there are no commercial consumer FCVs yet.[read more]

Utility 2.0: NY's New Business Model Should Properly Value the Costs and Benefits of Distributed Energy Resources

August 27, 2014 by EDF Energy Exchange

New York's Utility Future

As we’ve mentioned before, New York is changing how it evaluates and compensates electric utilities. One goal of this change is increased consumer engagement, which makes customers allies in the development of a more reliable, resilient, and ‘smart’ electric grid.[read more]

Distributed Marginal Price: The New Metric for the Grid Edge?

August 27, 2014 by Jeff St. John

Metrics for the Grid Edge

The grid is changing from a one-way, centralized electricity delivery system to a distributed, networked system for generating, storing and consuming power, and the technology is changing a lot faster than the economic and regulatory systems that govern it.[read more]

Can Nuclear Energy Secure Financing? Nuclear Power and the Capital Challenge

August 26, 2014 by Milton Caplan
12

Paying for Nuclear Plants

Quite often we hear about the problem of attracting financing to support new build nuclear projects. While it is easy to agree that financing nuclear projects is a big challenge, in my view difficulty securing financing is not the issue – rather it is a symptom of a number of other very important issues that are the root cause.[read more]

Failed Fuel Cell Maker Lilliputian, Cleantech VC, and Due Diligence

August 26, 2014 by Eric Wesoff

Investment, Technology, and Risk

Failed MIT spinout and consumer fuel cell startup Lilliputian Systems faces the sell-off of its assets and IP after more than twelve years of development and hype, $150 million in VC investment and dozens of press releases attesting to the strength of its portable charging technology.[read more]

Which Solar Company Boasts the Highest Market Cap?

August 24, 2014 by Eric Wesoff
1

Coming in with a $6.92 billion market cap (the total dollar market value of the company's outstanding shares) is First Solar, the cadmium-telluride thin-film solar panel builder and project engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) company.[read more]

The Importance of 'Right' Renewable Energy Support Policies at the 'Right' Stage

August 22, 2014 by Roman Kilisek
1

Energy Support and Timing

The US Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) has recently released a report – prepared by the Brattle Group – on how Germany’s policies to support solar PV have made the country a world leader in deploying solar PV over the last decade.[read more]

Price of US Wind Energy at 'All-Time Low' of 2.5 Cents per Kilowatt-Hour

August 22, 2014 by Eric Wesoff
32

A just-released Department of Energy and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory report pegs utility-scale wind power-purchase agreement pricing as averaging $25 per megawatt-hour for projects that negotiated contracts in 2013. That's cheap power.[read more]

Russia-China Deal Will Supply Siberian Natural Gas to China's Northern, Eastern Provinces

August 22, 2014 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

Russia and China and Natural Gas

China's natural gas demand has been growing as the government seeks to move away from coal in favor of cleaner fuels. According to EIA's International Energy Outlook 2013 (IEO2013) Reference case, demand will more than triple from 5.2 Tcf in 2012 to 17.5 Tcf by 2040.[read more]

Brace Yourself for Solargeddon

August 22, 2014 by Nigel Morris
2

OK, here’s the bad news. Despite all our efforts, I fear that Solargeddon is a big step closer. As an advisor to solar businesses across the country and around the world, unless we are blessed with a shock announcement from our Prime Minister I now hold very little hope for the survival of the RET.[read more]

Regulators Approve Major Upgrades to California's Largest Low-Income Energy Efficiency Program

August 20, 2014 by NRDC Switchboard
2

Low-Income Energy Efficiency

The California Public Utilities Commission today unanimously adopted significant program enhancements for the state’s largest energy efficiency program dedicated to cutting bills and electricity waste for low-income households.[read more]