By now, you’ve seen us talk plenty about PACE, the popular finance model that helps property owners overcome the upfront costs of green retrofits and boosts local job growth in the process. (In case you have missed it, welcome back, and check our PACE resource page for more info). You’ve probably also heard that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac issued letters suggesting that property owners they lend to may be prohibited from participating in PACE programs (not insignificant considering that together these two organizations back around half of U.S. home mortgages). Then just last week, the lenders’ regulators at the Federal Housing Finance Authority (FHFA) issued a statement (more…)
GE and its partners announce the GE ecomagination Challenge: Powering the Grid, a $200 million investment in finding the best technologies, processes and business models to bring our energy grid into the 21st century. It’s about making clean energy real, bringing to market what works, right now.
In looking for the best ideas, GE is asking you to get involved in finding the solution.
You can submit an idea or vote for the ideas that you think are the most promising and play a part in defining the future of our energy grid.
There are three separate challenges to address how we create, connect and use energy, focused on: renewable energy, grid efficiency and eco homes/eco buildings.
How can companies like SunRun, Sungevity, and SolarCity provide a zero down or $1000 down solar lease while charging less per month than a utility company? Sound too good to be true? It’s not. Here’s a high level overview of how solar leases (and PPAs) work.
First, let’s briefly review how a homeowner would purchase and install a solar system without the benefit of a solar lease or PPA. A home owner purchases (more…)
Yesterday, President Obama spoke with workers at Smith Electric’s new factory in Kansas City. Missouri. With a $32 million grant under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act coupled with $36 million in private capital, the electric vehicle company is building up to 500 all-electric trucks.
While he was there, the President also had the pleasure of announcing the company was hiring its 50th worker at the plant. By September, that number is expected to grow to 70, and at the project’s peak, Smith tells us the project will create more than 220 direct and indirect jobs. As the President said:
For the last two months, energy auditors, energy efficiency experts, solar installers, and homeowners have been waiting and clamoring for more guidance from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. It was in May that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac abruptly and without justification changed their policy on the treatment of property tax assessments made pursuant to Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) programs. Originally, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac had decided to treat these assessments like any other assessment, but in May, decided to treat them as (more…)
(Reuters) – Drilling of a relief well to halt the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is a week ahead of schedule, the U.S. official overseeing the response to the disaster said on Tuesday.
The prospect of an earlier completion of the well, seen as the most promising way to plug the oil leaking from BP’s blown-out undersea well, could help bolster the energy giant’s battered shares, which rose about 9 percent in New York trade.
But Retired Coast Guard Admiral Thad Allen told (more…)
President Obama took the occasion of Independence Day to announce that the federal government will authorize $2 billion of Recovery Act funding to support the solar industry. Administered by the Department of Energy, the funds will target two companies: Abengoa Solar and Abound Solar Manufacturing.
Abengoa – an international solar firm with its roots in Spain—plans to build the world’s largest concentrating solar power plant in Arizona. The company says the facility, dubbed the Solana Project, will produce enough energy to power 70,000 households. The plant will use thermal storage equipment to parabolically recover energy for a 280 MW output capacity. The administration says the project will create 1,600 construction jobs. (more…)
The companies now threatening to sue BP have only themselves to blame.
Call me a hard-hearted bastard, but I’m finding it difficult to summon up the sympathy demanded by the institutional investors now threatening to sue BP. They claim that the company inflated its share price by misrepresenting its safety record. I don’t know whether this is true, but I do know that the investors did all they could not to find out. They have just been presented with the bill for the years they spent shouting down anyone who questioned the company.
They might not have been warned by BP, but they were warned repeatedly by environmental groups and ethical investment funds. Every year, at BP’s annual general meetings, they were invited to ask the firm to provide more information about the environmental and social risks it was taking. Every year they voted instead for BP to keep them in the dark. While relying on this company for a disproportionate share of (more…)
We talk a lot about the need for America to lead the world in green manufacturing, and with good reason: a strong green manufacturing sector will create good, domestic jobs and boost exports, all while helping us reduce carbon emissions and break our dependence on foreign oil.
But it’s not just talk. We’re taking action to re-establish that leadership, and what’s happening today, down in Louisville, Kentucky, is a perfect example of how we’re going to do it.
On a day when the rest of the stock market was tanking, Tesla Motors cruised to an IPO win worth $226.1million.
Concerns over consumer confidence, the European economy and growth in China brought the market to its lowest level of the year finishing down 268 points. Don’t tell Tesla. In a clear testament to the position the automaker has already achieved as a brand, investors lined up for a ride as the company became the first American car manufacturer to go public since Ford in 1956. (more…)