Standards have immense leverage. They are a powerful way to slow the accelerating hazards of climate change. In November, during the side events at the 23rd Conference of the Parties in Bonn, Germany, participants discussed what to do to use standards development to help nations take action on their Nationally Determined Contributions.
Recent news suggests that the United States solar tariff equates to doomsday for the solar industry. However, there are many additional factors at play that add complexity to future projections – including politics, the economy, and technology. Although many in the industry agree the tariff will slow the growth of solar installations, experts are mixed in the extent to which they believe this will harm the national industry.
During the solar policy debates that have happened in the United States over the past several years, many conversations about what low-income utility customers want have taken place without the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) being in the room. But now that the organization has published its 2017 report “Just Energy Policies: Model Energy Policies Guide,” it’s clear that the views of its constituents have been misrepresented in these meetings.
Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are on the front line of climate change, facing the damage of shrinking coastlines and the ravages of tropical storms. However, these 57 island nations around the world can attempt to address this global challenge by relying on their renewable resources including sunshine, wind, hydropower and biomass. The topic was the subject of multiple events in November at COP23 in Bonn, Germany.
Momentum is building in the private sector for climate resilience financing. This necessary acceleration could help to avert the worst consequences of climate change. Financiers and others weighed in about their priorities and goals at COP23 in Germany on Nov. 13 in the Bonn Zone. They shared their thoughts and successes from developing pathways for resilience financing.
The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Energy Star program has enlisted millions of consumers into the fight against climate change while helping them save $430 billion on their utility bills. By simply promoting energy-efficient solutions, the program has forever changed consumer mentality and clean energy finance.
Although clean energy may not take center stage as the star employment generator in the Great Recession recovery, it plays an important supporting role, according to Jim Barrett, chief economist at American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy. This goes above and beyond the economic benefits of climate protection reported by the United States Environmental Protection Agency.
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.
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.
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.
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.
How can green banks collaborate internationally to scale up private financing to meet the challenge of climate change? A new international organization, the Green Bank Network, hopes to lead the way. During the Paris climate conference, six green banks and two nonprofit organizations jointly announced the opening of the network on Dec. 7. The network will accelerate clean energy installations and mobilize private investments worldwide.
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.
What are the political options the United States solar industry faces as it seeks to avert the impact of the phase-out of the federal investment tax credit (ITC)? A policy paper produced by researchers at The George Washington University, “Softer Solar Landings: Options to Avoid the Investment Tax Credit Cliff,” explores four potential alternatives to the current plan and assesses their political viability.
The CEO of green utility Good Energy has called UK government cuts to renewable-energy subsidies "a hatchet job" enacted without appreciation for the positive impact renewables were having on wholesale energy prices...
One of the overlooked elements in President Obama's Clean Power Plan is the positive effect it will likely have on low-income United States citizens - those who suffer most from climate change and who are facing a crisis in available affordable housing...