Pope Francis issued Laudato si’ (Praise Be to You) On the care for our common home, his second encyclical, concerning Catholic doctrine with respect to climate change, consumerism, and development.
Long-frustrated wind and solar developers in Australia can now get to work on more than A$14 billion ($11 billion) in projects after a new renewable energy target passed parliament.
It’s one of the most powerful, inspiring examples yet of the energy transformation that we’re driving all across this nation, and if done right, it could also provide an economic boost for Widows Creek workers and the local community.
If you Hate Money, Don’t Invest in Solar!
It took the solar industry forty years to reach a cumulative
global capacity of 100 gigawatts …
By 2020, more than 100 gigawatts will be installed in a single
According to a new report from the good folks over at Greentech
Media, the solar industry will install a mind-blowing 135
gigawatts of solar PV projects all across the globe in less than
five years. This will push the cumulative market to nearly 700
gigawatts – or about the size of all the electrical generating
capacity in Europe today.
And consider the following estimates:
This is why, as I’ve explained before, I’m trying to limit our
exposure to China solar stocks.
On the flip side, however, U.S. solar manufacturers and
developers can only continue to get stronger. If you want exposure
to the solar space, Sunpower (NASDAQ: SPWR),
First Solar (NASDAQ: FSLR),
or SunEdison (NYSE: SUNE)
should definitely be a part of your portfolio.
All three, by the way, should also get a very nice bump if a
select group of lawmakers in California get their way.
No Subsidies Needed
The California Senate recently passed a new bill that, if signed
into law, would require the Golden State to get 50 percent of its
electricity from renewables by 2030.
It wasn’t long ago when California upped its renewable energy
mandate from 20 percent by 2020 to 33% by 2020. Now here we are
today looking at the possibility of a 50% renewable energy
On the surface, it seems quite aggressive. And in all fairness,
right now, it is. But in another few years, costs will fall so
low, solar will actually be the most cost competitive source of
electricity in California. And that’s without subsidies.
Of course, it seems like every day the need for additional
subsidies dwindles, anyway.
Solar superstar and founder of SunEdison, Jigar Shah, has been
quite vocal on this issue, insisting that if we phase out the
solar tax credits and other solar subsidies in mature markets, the
result will be more robust growth.
Check it out …
As the Founder of the largest solar services provider,
SunEdison, I had a hand in putting in place subsidies so that we
could reduce costs through scale in local markets. This strategy
has resulted in an average system cost reduction of over 50%
But today, solar subsidies in maturing markets like the United
States are actually holding us back, not propelling us forward.
In fact, Germany has hit an all time high for solar capacity
with 30-gigawatts peak (GWp) of solar power installed. Germany
has done this by installing solar at far cheaper prices than we
are in the United States. That is because solar subsidies are
manipulated by investors like me to maximize our returns. The
truth is that installers in the United States can, and do,
install solar at roughly the same cost as German installers –
save for some increased soft costs. If we want to reach higher
growth, we need to phase out the solar tax credits and other
solar subsidies in mature markets and watch the price of solar
And just the other day, First Solar CEO, Jim Hughes, actually
called the expiration of the solar investment tax credit
“irrelevant,” saying …
Within 18 months, we will overcome the cost delta resulting
from the drop [of the ITC] from 30 percent to 10 percent. It
actually opens up new markets, in our opinion, because you’ll
see an increased interest in utility generation once the
distortion of the ITC is behind us.
Hughes also made an important point that I’ve been making for
The growth in corporates interested in direct acquisition of
photovoltaic power is not driven by climate change concerns –
it’s driven by economics. When you look at data centers, when
you look at electricity-intensive industries, they are all
interested in locking in a significant cost as a fixed cost
rather than a commodity-priced variable cost — and that’s
driving a whole lot of procurement on a global basis.
So here we are, looking at a global market that’s growing
incredibly rapidly, and even in the absence of direct subsidies,
will continue to break records.
When it comes to energy investing, there is simply no greater
growth opportunity than solar.
The United States has the technological imperative to lead on clean energy. We have the economic imperative to engage in job creation that is good for all of creation. We have the moral responsibility to protect our planet for future generat…
MobileMuster and Able Australia as part of Deafblind Awareness Week (20-27 June) are urging people to support Australia’s deafblind community by donating their unwanted working smartphones* (including batteries and chargers) before 31 July 2015.
U.S. Senators Chris Coons and Jerry Moran are leading a bipartisan effort to reintroduce tax code legislation aimed at leveling the playing field for renewable energy investment. The Master Limited Partnerships Parity Act would enable renewable energy …