Investing in Rene...
12.1K views | +0 today
Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Renewable Energy
onto Investing in Renewable Energy!

Global warming in one unmistakably compelling chart

Global warming in one unmistakably compelling chart | Investing in Renewable Energy |
If you have any doubt the balance of the globe has warmed over the last century, view this chart.

Produced by NASA, the chart illustrates how temperatures have compared to “normal” from 1880 to present, from pole to pole.

From the 1880 to the 1920s, blue and green shades dominate the chart, signaling cooler than normal temperatures in that era.  Then, from the 1930s to the 1970s, warmer yellow, oranges, and reds shades ooze in, balancing the cooler shades.

The rapid warming at the northern high latitudes especially jumps out in recent decades, reflecting “Arctic amplification” or more intense warming in the Arctic.  Although the warming is most pronounced up north, it is apparent at almost every latitude.

But since the 1970s, the blue and green shades rapidly erode and oranges and reds take over, dramatically.

Find more information at the link, click on the title...

Want to Start your Own Website, you have the Ideas and Content, but you're not sure where to start? Check out Sitesell:

Via Lauren Moss, Zsolt Tinelly
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

This chart is clear. Global warming is increasing at an alarming pace.

IOANNIS APOSTOLOU's curator insight, September 13, 2013 9:26 AM

Global warming facts!

Owen Roberts, BSc, MBA's curator insight, September 23, 2013 8:16 AM

GLOBAL WARMING - Here is an chart developed by NASA that shows how much global temperatures have changed during the last 140 years.  Quite compelling. 

Hein Holthuizen's comment, September 29, 2013 4:00 AM
There is no doubt about an general increase of temperature. Whether it is worrysome is not to be seen on this small scale. We had colder periodes like ice ages and now we are likely in a interglacial. So global temperatures change over time. Nice picture btw.
Investing in Renewable Energy
Your new post is loading...
Your new post is loading...
Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Daily Magazine!

First floating solar plant hopes to change waste energy in Australia

First floating solar plant hopes to change waste energy in Australia | Investing in Renewable Energy |

A floating solar plant is set to be constructed on a wastewater treatment basin in South Australia, in an Australia-first initiative.

The plant, which is expected to be up and running by April, will float on a water treatment facility in Jamestown, according to the ABC. It will be used to generate energy to power the plant and any leftover energy will be transferred to the town of Jamestown.

It looks very similar to a traditional land-based solar plant, besides the fact it is designed to float. The system uses high-density polyethylene pipe for buoyancy and sits on a structural steel pontoon, which the panels slot into.

Infratech Industries is behind the ambitious project that will see efficiency increased by 57% compared to the land-based comparison. Felicia Whiting of Infratech Industries told the ABC the system is perfect for dry climates as the water body keeps the panels cool.

"It prevents water evaporation up to 90 per cent of the surface area covered, and for dry states and dry climates that's a big water saving measure," Whiting said. Read more, click on image or title.

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

"It has been an absolute delight working with you and this will be just a beginning in my relationship with Growthink.
I am very satisfied with my business plan and financial plan. Your work is outstanding."
Michael Mundi
Mundi Homes

Via Official AndreasCY
Marc Kneepkens's insight:


kelvinsmim's curator insight, March 5, 7:24 AM

toyota celica alternator

Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from visual data!

Poetic NASA Visualization Shows How Everything Is Connected

Poetic NASA Visualization Shows How Everything Is Connected | Investing in Renewable Energy |

NASA visualizes the 22,000 tons of life-giving dust that flows between Africa and South America.

On Earth, there couldn't be a bigger difference between the Amazon rainforest and the African Sahara. The latter is a brown streak of wasteland; the former, green and teeming with life. Polar opposites though they may be, the Amazon and the Sahara have a symbiotic relationship: the nutrients of desert dust blow across the Atlantic and feed the rainforest. This process is normally invisible to the eye, but NASA has visualized it in three-dimensions in a beautiful video.

To show how clouds of dust blow across the Atlantic, scientists at the Godard Flight Center tracked dust from the Bodélé Depression in Chad, an ancient lake bed containing rock minerals composed of dead microorganisms. And those dead microorganisms? They're loaded with phosphorous, an essential nutrient for plant growth; the lush Amazon rainforest can't get enough of it. Phosphorous is much rarer in the soils of the Amazon than in the desert, but because winds dump approximately 22,000 tons of phosphorous-rich dust on the Amazon every year, the rainforest's supply is constantly replenished.

The dust visualization was derived from data collected from 2007 through 2013 by NASA's Cloud-Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observation satellite, or CALYPSO. CALYPSO sent out constant pulses of light that refracted off dust particles in the atmosphere, then back to the satellite. Twenty-two thousand tons of dust might sound huge, but it's a drop in the bucket compared with how much dust the winds of the Sahara actually actually pick up: an average of 182 million tons, which is the equivalent of nearly 690,000 semi-trucks filled with dust.

If you needed another reminder of how small the world is, here you go. Everything is connected. Read more about NASA's work tracking atmospheric dust here.

[via Notcot]  Watch this amazing video here:

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Growthink really understands how to create compelling business plans and raise capital, and Growthink's Capital Raising Products succeed in infusing this knowledge.
-John Morris
Managing Director, GKM Ventures,
Board of Governors, Tech Coast Angels

Via Lauren Moss
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Amazing video.

No comment yet.
Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Internet Presence!

"Stop Me Before I Kill the Planet": Another Major Oil Producer calls for Carbon Pricing | CaseWorthy

"Stop Me Before I Kill the Planet": Another Major Oil Producer calls for Carbon Pricing | CaseWorthy | Investing in Renewable Energy |

On the heels of Shell, now BP has warned that carbon dioxide emission levels from burning fossil fuels are unsustainable unless the international community unilaterally introduces tougher binding regulations on atmospheric pollution.

 In another astonishing announcement, a second major Oil producer has called for a global carbon  pricing mechanism.
BP follows last week’s speech from Ben Van Beurden, CEO of Shell, which called for policies to curb climate change, including a price on carbon.

Read more: click on the image or title.

Get your Free #BusinessPlanTemplate here:

Via AleksBlumentals, Marc Kneepkens
AleksBlumentals's curator insight, February 20, 5:47 AM

The stark warning from the UK’s second-largest oil company came with the publication on Tuesday of its closely-watched long-term outlook for global energy markets, which predicts that CO2 emissions will increase by 1pc per year, or 25pc in total, through to 2035.


We are at a moment of historical change – I don’t think it’s too much to compare this to the fall of the Iron Curtain and the Berlin Wall in 1989.  A gigantic, monolithic industry that has for decades presented a united front against action on climate is now realizing the stakes are so high, the science so overwhelming,  the politics so clearly lining up against them, and possibly most important, the growing impact of the Divestment movement asinvestors wake up to their exposure to a “carbon bubble” – that they are lining up and calling for action.



Marc Kneepkens's curator insight, February 20, 7:21 AM

A wake up call! When the oil giants are clearly sending out a warning it is definitely time for governments and corporation to start dealing with the challenge. Apple is setting a great example. Read the article for details.

Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Family Office - Empowering Family Dynasties!

Solar Energy Can Now Be Converted Into Liquid Fuel

Solar Energy Can Now Be Converted Into Liquid Fuel | Investing in Renewable Energy |

The potential applications of solar power just got a whole lot wider

Researchers at Harvard have discovered how to convert solar energy into liquid fuel, potentially accelerating our switch to the alternative-energy source, according to an article in this month’s scientific journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

At the moment, solar energy can be converted into hydrogen by using photovoltaic cells. The hydrogen can then be stored in fuel cells for future use. But hydrogen has failed to make headway as an energy source in a world that is infrastructurally set up to handle liquid fuels.

Now, however, scientists have figured out a way of using sunlight to split water into hydrogen and oxygen. They then use a bacterium to convert the hydrogen, plus carbon dioxide, into the liquid fuel isopropanol.

“This is a proof of concept that you can have a way of harvesting solar energy and storing it in the form of a liquid fuel,” said researcher Pamela Silver.

The hope now is that solar energy will find more takers, particularly in the developing world, where the ability to make energy locally will be a boon.

[Science Daily]

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Great info. Loving your business plan template, makes writing a plan almost fun.

Craig Heppell
Nambour, Queensland

Via Enzo Calamo
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Solar is really making waves lately. The future is bright.

No comment yet.
Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Competitive Edge!

10 Ways the Next 10 Years Are Going To Be Mind-Blowing | High Existence

10 Ways the Next 10 Years Are Going To Be Mind-Blowing | High Existence | Investing in Renewable Energy |

We are living in an extremely exciting time in terms of science and technology. Things that have always been considered science fiction are becoming normal day-to-day components of our lives. And while we have been seeing invention after breakthrough over and over in the last couple of decades, this next ten years is going to blow everything else out of the water.

The awesome thing about all these scientific discoveries it that they create technology that allows us to make more breakthroughs even faster. Our ability to innovate is increasing exponentially as the years go by. To give you an idea of the magnitude of this reality, here are 10 amazing innovations to different sectors of life. They should give you a pretty good idea of what changes will be made by 2020. Read more: click title or image.

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Growthink really understands how to create compelling business plans and raise capital, and Growthink's Capital Raising Products succeed in infusing this knowledge.
-John Morris
Managing Director, GKM Ventures,
Board of Governors, Tech Coast Angels

Via TechinBiz, ventureLAB, Marc Kneepkens
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Check out #6 on 'Energy'. Solar is in for a revolution.

Marc Kneepkens's curator insight, February 3, 2:03 PM

Wow, take a look, amazing stuff in so many different fields.

Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from The Sustainability Journal - by Vikram R Chari!

The top 5 climate science and policy developments to watch in 2015

The top 5 climate science and policy developments to watch in 2015 | Investing in Renewable Energy |
2014 was a year in which mammoth climate science assessments seemed to appear once a week, and policymakers made an unprecedented (albeit still sluggish) push toward establishing an effective global climate policy framework.

Via Vikram R Chari
Ann Duffy's curator insight, January 1, 2:14 PM

Time for a tipping a point - let's see a global framework come together in 2015!

Scooped by Marc Kneepkens!

Free-Energy Ocean Turbines: The Death Of Fossil Fuels!

Free-Energy Ocean Turbines: The Death Of Fossil Fuels! | Investing in Renewable Energy |

By Steven Bancarz|  We already know that using fossil fuels as a main source of energy is completely outdated and unnecessary.  Several significant pollutants are produced by fossil fuel combustion as well: carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, sulfur oxides, and hydrocarbons.

Oil spills and coal waste are polluting our land and water, killing precious animal life in the process.  Our nation’s fossil fuel dependence means that, to ensure our supply, we may be forced to protect foreign sources of oil. The Persian Gulf War is a perfect example: US troops were sent to the Gulf in part to guard against a possible cutoff of our oil supply.  Could this be a reason for spending so long in the middle east and going into Syria recently?

The fossil fuel industry is poisoning our health, our planet, and even our morality. They are not renewable and will run out in the near future.  We can do better than this.  We have seen examples of free energy devices online, which are often genius but lack a global application.  We have all seen solar panels and wind turbines, which are a great start.  These are certainly good options, but they are contingent on the amount of sunlight and wind speed that is being produced any given day.  There is a third option which is so obvious and could produce more energy in a more sustainable fashion.  Yet for some reason, nobody talks about it. Underwater ocean turbines This is exciting.

The Gulf Stream ocean current alone has the energy density to power most of North America.  Imagine what we could generate if Ocean Utility Turbines were scattered all throughout our major gulfs, lakes, and oceans?  The ocean’s currents have enough usable power to replace all fossil fuel and nuclear energy dependence forever.  We could literally power the world overnight.

This is an underwater ocean turbine.  The turbine is composed of three sets of blades which close when they are moving in the same direction as the flow of water. When the blades close they create an obstacle that the water has to push out of its path of flow. When water pushes on the closed blades it causes the main shaft and generator to rotate which  produces energy in the form of electricity.

When the blades are moving in the opposite direction as the flow of water they open. When the blades open they create minimal drag in the oncoming flow of water. This design creates very high surface area and drag on the power stroke side of the turbine while creating very low surface area and drag on the returning side. This design has proven to be the most efficient for collecting energy from ocean currents.

Just to give you a scope of how effective these things could be, just one turbine with 30 meter blades in a 3 meter per second current will produce 13,500kw per hour or 324,000Kw per day. With an average residential price of $0.08USD per kilowatt hour this turbine would hypothetically generate $25,920 in electricity per 24 hours while powering all of the energy needs of 13,500 average homes with 100% clean, and safe renewable energy.  Americans are currently spending over 100 billion dollars each year in carbon tax money to go towards climate change research.  If even half of that money went to developing and installing under water turbines, we could power the whole world over night.  Here is one of these things in action.  Now imagine this, but with the turbine having a length of 30 meters:


Here are a list of just SOME of the benefits of ocean utility turbines:

● Energy output of 13.5 MW/hour
● 100% reliable energy – not dependent upon wind or sun, ocean currents are always flowing.
● Doesn’t add heat to environment
● No emissions
● Water safe materials and paints
● Anti-fouling, anti-corrosive, won’t rust, won’t grow sea-life
● Can’t see it, hear it, or smell it.
● Huge survivability in storms (unlike other free energy devices)
● Can provide energy and clean water to hurricane/tsunami victims.
● Components in the utility-scale turbines are non-corrosive non-toxic metals and high performance composite fiber
● Design of turbine has large acoustic signature so marine animals can echo-locate it, moves slow enough for them to move around it, will not harm marine life
● Less susceptible target for terrorism
● Doesn’t take up high value land – places that need power = high population density, usually can’t support large wind turbines or solar projects because the demand is too high and the available area for those projects is not available in populated areas.

This is literally the free energy device we have been waiting to see.  Here is where it gets exciting.  One thing these turbines have is an abundance of shaft torque. This excess torque can be used to drive high pressure Reverse Osmosis Desalinization Pumps to provide not only limitless energy, but also limitless fresh water. There will come a day when the fresh water may be more valuable than the clean energy. Think of what humanity could accomplish with unlimited fresh water and unlimited clean energy.  Not only would underwater turbine farms power entire cities, the would also be turning ocean saltwater into drinkable water!

A renewable source of free energy that also cleans our water for us.  This is something some big corporations certainly do not want us to start using. Here is a great video summarizing the science and mission of this ingenious free energy device:


The group of scientists and researching who have been developing this technology for the last decade have a combined experience of 150 years in underwater engineering.  With several awards already under their belt, the want to take these to the next level and begin to produce and install them to power cities.

Rather then turn to Big Business for help, they are turning to us, the people.  They have recently started an Indiegogo campaign so that people like us who are fed up with Big Oil, the 1%, and what fossil fuels are doing to the planet can help contribute to this revolution in eco-friendly energy.  We all talk about wanting to save the environment, the planet, and the future of us and our children.  We have everything we need to create a world of free energy and clean water right now.  Here is our chance to make it a reality, and win a Tesla P85D car in the process. That’s right.  If you choose to support this revolutionary project, you will not only receive awesome perks and the knowledge that you are contributing to a better world, you will also be entered into a sweepstakes to win a brand new fully loaded 2014 Tesla electric car.  At 700hp, it stands as the fastest sedan in history.  If we all ban together for a cause, we can literally change this planet overnight.


If you are interested in checking out the campaign, you can do so by clicking HERE or by clicking on the photo below.

- See more at:

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Great concept, check it out and be part of it through the crowdfunding campaign.

Zsolt Tinelly's curator insight, November 30, 2014 12:48 PM

add meg a belátás ...

Scooped by Marc Kneepkens!

Clean, sustainable energy startups will get a boost at summer 2015 accelerator program |

Clean, sustainable energy startups will get a boost at summer 2015 accelerator program | | Investing in Renewable Energy |

Huntsville's  small but growing clean and sustainable technologies. industry sector has been struggling to get off the ground. But it got a boost Thursday night from Rocket Hatch with the announcement of plans for the Alabama's first accelerator for high growth, clean technology startups in the summer of 2015.

Alabama Center for Sustainable Energy founder and CEO Daniel Tait has teamed with Rocket Hatch, Fortnum Capital and CleanTech Open to hold Alabama's first accelerator for sustainable technology businesses.

Comparing the program to a "bootcamp for entrepreneurs," Tait said the one or two day event will offer an initial cohort of five or more startup businesses the opportunity to examine their assumptions and turn business ideas into action.

The combination of the four entities working together gives clean technology startups the help they need in several critical areas. "We're the energy guys, Rocket Hatch is the local entrepreneurial community, and Fortnum Capital will be the venture capitalists.  And its all patterned after CleanTech Open."

"The Tennessee Valley region has a wealth of human and intellectual capital around clean technology, but the investors, the entrepreneurs and the ideas need a collaborative methodology and network to succeed."

The idea is patterned on the model used by CleanTech Open, the California-based and world's largest accelerator for clean technology startups. "They have a structure already in place to do this, and we want to leverage their experience," Tait explained.

Chris Taylor, Fortnum Capital Managing Partner said the program will give startups access not only to capital but to entrepreneurial expertise. 

"The Tennessee Valley region has a wealth of human and intellectual capital around clean technology, but the investors, the entrepreneurs and the ideas need a collaborative methodology and network to succeed."

Tait's goal is that the summer 2015 Alabama accelerator will serve to funnel companies to CleanTech's larger, national program. "Our goal is to feed southeastern companies into CleanTech and helping them function on their own," he said.

The next step in process is a call for applications, which Tait expects within weeks. "Right now we are seeking entrepreneurs and people with ideas, as well as mentors with experience in clean tech startups," he said.

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Marc Kneepkens's insight:

More opportunities for Clean Tech ideas and startups

No comment yet.
Scooped by Marc Kneepkens!

Google: $1 billion Investment In Alternative Energy - Infographic -

Google: $1 billion Investment In Alternative Energy - Infographic - | Investing in Renewable Energy |
At Google, They have invested over $1 Billion dollar in alternative energy sources "Solar & Wind". According to Google this projects will...
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Glad that tech companies are doing their share when it comes to Renewable Energy!

Michael Tournier's curator insight, November 23, 2014 8:03 PM

Good to see the big guys going all out for renewables.

Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Trending Intelligence!

A Groundbreaking Technology that could cause significant Disruption within the Renewable Energy Industry

A Groundbreaking Technology that could cause significant Disruption within the Renewable Energy Industry | Investing in Renewable Energy |

An innovative new Technology is emerging that could have
major implications within the Renewable Energy Industry.

An innovative new Technology is emerging that could have
major implications within the Renewable Energy Industry.
This new Energy Generation System uses secret patented nanotechnology and is able to harvest thermal Energy from natural Daylight at much greater performance levels than any existing established technologies, such as Heat Pumps or Solar thermal.

The inventors of this new system called Hone : claim they have made history with the most significant innovation in Home Energy generation in over 125 years.

New innovations needed to help reduce the effects of Global Warming

Because of the demands posed by global warming and our increasing
need to reduce damaging CO2 emissions, caused by burning fossil
fuels like Oil and Gas. Demand has increased for new innovations in this area, this new system uses innovative nanotechnology that can cut a typical Building emissions by up to 78% , this makes it a ground breaking technology in terms helping to reduce damaging emissions and helping the environment.

Attractive return on investment

Also as this System generates Heat from a FREE Clean
Energy Source “Daylight” all year round, it can reduce Fuel
Bills significantly enabling it to provide a short return on Investment
and to generate substantial long term financial savings for the homeowner.

Outstanding performance compared to existing technologies

As well as reduced emissions and financial savings this system also
have an impressive level of performance. A coefficient of
performance or (COP) is a measure of a systems performance,
Higher COPs equate to lower operating costs. This system has been recorded delivering a COP of 1:221, that’s nearly 50 times more efficient than a Heat Pump, Plus a Heat Pump needs to use electricity ( & 80% of electricity is generated by burning fossil Fuels )

So this System delivers major benefits in terms of reducing Damaging CO2 Emissions as well as financial benefits such as higher output at a lower cost making this new technology far more attractive in terms of investment and Payback compared to existing Technologies.

these are attributes that will help ensure it becomes a truly disruptive technology within the Renewable Energy Industry.

Want to know more about this System?  then click here

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Via André Michel, Official AndreasCY, Gebeyehu B. Amha
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Amazing technology will have a huge impact in energy.

Official AndreasCY's curator insight, October 27, 2014 6:40 AM

Get all the news updates straight to your email.

Craig Broadbent's curator insight, October 29, 2014 6:36 PM

Great example of technology disrupting more traditional business models.

Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Technology in Business Today!

Largest Solar-Powered Car Makes U.S. Debut

Largest Solar-Powered Car Makes U.S. Debut | Investing in Renewable Energy |
'Stella' began as a school project and evolved into a prize-winning solar-powered racecar

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Via TechinBiz
Marc Kneepkens's insight:


Triangle Software's curator insight, October 15, 2014 5:00 AM

add your insight...

Russell R. Roberts, Jr.'s curator insight, October 15, 2014 8:52 PM

Fascinating story of how a student project turned into a prize-winning solar-powered race car.  "Out of the box" thinking at its best.  Aloha, Russ.

Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Daily Magazine!

How Wolves Change Rivers - YouTube

Visit to explore the world of sustainability. For more from George Monbiot, visit and for more on "rewildi...

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Via Official AndreasCY
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Much more than rivers. One aspect in the whole equilibrium called 'Nature' can change the whole picture. This little video is amazing. Imagine what you can do yourself when 'making a difference'.

Official AndreasCY's curator insight, October 8, 2014 2:17 AM

The Domino Effect in Nature: How One Small Step can Change the World

Watch this video. It's the most profound short science video we've seen in a very long time. It shows how the re-introduction of wolves after a seventy-year absence led to...the river courses changing. Yes, that's right. The rivers responded to the presence of a few dozen wolves. Find out how in the video.

The metaphorical implications are enormous, almost too large to hold in our heads. If we can find the right domino to knock over, the resulting cascade of reactions can change the world. Scientists call it trophic cascades

Imagine how we can make use of this in our personal lives: Make an incremental change (and stick with it, and be patient), and you can change your life and those around you. 

And in our environment: A few of the right incremental changes could restore a healthy balance to the entire planet.

Even in politics: What if we elect more non-party candidates who bring reason rather than polarity to issues?

And what a great gift for novelists: It gives a greater leverage to the plot question, What if...?

Russell R. Roberts, Jr.'s curator insight, October 9, 2014 12:09 AM

This video will change your mind on how one animal species can change nature.  The implications for human society and our ability to work together are huge. Fascinating presentation.  Aloha, Russ.

Ms. Stephens's curator insight, October 9, 2014 10:20 AM

How the introduction of wolves into Yellowstone changed the course of a river.

Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Caseworthy!

Chile could be one of the first real, non-incentivized solar markets in the world | CaseWorthy

Chile could be one of the first real, non-incentivized solar markets in the world | CaseWorthy | Investing in Renewable Energy |

“We are betting we will produce power at less than the going rate.”

Someday solar electricity generation won't require subsidies, incentives, tax breaks, feed-in tariffs or even a power purchase agreement to reach a customer. Solar power producers will simply bid into power or energy markets and compete head to head with coal, gas, and nuclear.

It's happening today in Chile.

Total and Etrion Corporation claim that their proposed Project Salvador is "the world’s largest solar power project based on spot market electricity (“merchant”) revenues." Power will be sold to the Sistema Interconectado Central electricity network.

The 70-megawatt deployment is in the Atacama region of Chile, a high-altitude region with some serious DNI. The Atacama Desert is more than 40,000 square miles and has the earth's most intense sunlight.

GTM Research has the data on the region: "With an energy-intensive mining sector accounting for one-third of the world's copper and a massive dependence on imported fossil fuels, Chile's electricity prices are very high. In 2012, some consumers were paying an average of $0.25 per kilowatt-hour on the spot market. Solar companies recognizing the need for cheaper, domestic generation in Chile have planned for more than 6 gigawatts of projects -- some of which could cost less than $2 per watt to develop."

The project will be built and maintained by Total’s affiliate, SunPower (SPWR).

We spoke with SunPower CEO Tom Werner this week. He defined "merchant solar" as essentially meaning that there's no PPA and said, "We are betting we will produce power at less than the going rate." Werner called this project a team effort that produced on the promise of Total's international reach.

Werner noted that the combination of Chile's high electricity prices and high DNI puts Chile in "a position to emerge as one of the leaders in the Latin American market for renewable energy -- in particular, ground-mounted solar PV," according to SunPower. Chile also has net metering and a 20 percent by 2015 Renewable Portfolio Standard. Werner said conditions on this project were ideal for interconnect and water availability.

Werner noted that most merchant solar projects were done on a much smaller scale. He also pointed out another first: Total has a 10 percent equity stake in the project, further demonstrating Total's commitment.

The Overseas Private Investment Corporation, the U.S. government’s development finance institution, is financing 70 percent of the $200 million project with the balance funded by Etrion, Total and Solventus. According to a release, Chile has an investment-grade rating, and the OPIC debt is "non-recourse project debt with a 19.5-year tenor."

“Project Salvador is an important step in the process of transforming the capabilities of solar power in the world. This merchant project confirms that solar energy is becoming competitive with other conventional energy sources,” said Philippe Boisseau, President of Marketing & Services and New Energies and a member of the Executive Committee of Total in a release.

Boisseau told us in an earlier interview, "‘We have some projects in South Africa and in Chile that we're bringing to SunPower. That's another one of the benefits we are bringing: access to the world where it is economical with no subsidy to produce electricity.” Boisseau commented to GTM yesterday that “[t]his is the first solar project in Chile for Total and SunPower. It is a proof of the strong collaboration between our teams. Total is leveraging its international footprint, with activities in 130 countries, to develop SunPower solar projects around the world.”

First Solar (FSLR) also regards Chile as a growth market. Earlier this year, First Solar acquired Solar Chile, a five-person Santiago-based solar developer with a 1.5-gigawatt early-stage pipeline of PV power projects in northern Chile, including the Atacama Desert. The thin-film solar panel manufacturer and project developer has applied for permits for the $370 million, 162-megawatt Luz del Norte project, according to a filing with Chile’s environmental licensing department. The project will use more than 1.7 million panels, with construction slated to start in June 2014.

Chile could be one of the first real, non-incentivized solar markets in the world. Its relatively unreliable and expensive electricity has made Chile an early adopter of energy storage technology in the mining industry, as well.

Stephen Lacey's recent article on Chilean power markets pointed out that:

- Installations will grow strongly in Chile, but it will take many years for the 6 gigawatts of project announcements to materialize.

- Initial development will focus on the mining sector, but larger projects will sell into the spot market. SunEdison recently signed an agreement with the Chilean mining company CAP to supply electricity from a 100-megawatt plant -- the largest so far in Latin America. OPIC was involved in financing this project as well.

- Only the most sophisticated companies will be able to navigate Chile's complicated electricity market. 

SunPower will deploy the Oasis single-axis tracker module, with construction expected to start before the end of the year.

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Via AleksBlumentals
No comment yet.
Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Scinnovation!

World’s first grid-connected wave power station switched on in Australia

World’s first grid-connected wave power station switched on in Australia | Investing in Renewable Energy |

The world’s first grid-connected wave power station has been activated off the coast of Western Australia (WA).

After more than a decade of testing and demonstrations, Australian company Carnegie Wave Energy has switched on a pilot project that has begun feeding wave-generated electricity into a local WA grid.  


The world’s first grid-connected wave power station has been activated off the coast of Western Australia (WA).  

After more than a decade of testing and demonstrations, Australian company Carnegie Wave Energy has switched on a pilot project that has begun feeding wave-generated electricity into a local WA grid.   

“This is the first array of wave power generators to be connected to an electricity grid in Australia and worldwide,” said Ivor Frischknecht, CEO of the Australian Renewable Energy Agency, in a statement. The Agency has provided $13 million of the $32 million project.

The company’s technology named CETO after a Greek goddess of the sea converts ocean swell into zero-emission renewable power and zero-emission desalinated freshwater.  

The company says its system is “different from other wave energy devices as it operates under water where it is safer from large storms [and corrosion] and invisible from the shore”.  Read more: click on image or title.

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

"Hey Dave!
I bought one of your business planning templates and have been receiving your emails and videos for a few months now...
I just wanted to say thanks for cranking out such amazing work!
You're doing an incredible job, and I know entrepreneurs everywhere are benefiting from it! Please, keep it up.
Wishing you all the best!"
Colin Pape
President, Inc.

Via S. Diez de Medina
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Renewable is gaining ground everywhere and in every direction. It's a must or climate change will be out of control beyond repair, hopefully we're not that far yet.

Richard Platt's curator insight, March 1, 9:28 PM

The company says its system is “different from other wave energy devices as it operates under water where it is safer from large storms [and corrosion] and invisible from the shore”.  The round, submerged buoys are tethered to seabed pump units, which are installed at a depth of between 25 and 50 metres. Waves crashing into the buoys drive the pumps, which push pressurised seawater through a pipeline beneath the ocean floor to an onshore hydroelectric power station. Here, the high-pressure water drives a turbine and generates electricity.

Scooped by Marc Kneepkens!

Study unearths impacts of our growing carbon emissions — and it's not pretty

Study unearths impacts of our growing carbon emissions — and it's not pretty | Investing in Renewable Energy |

On Mashable, by Andrew Freedman

Scientists have directly confirmed what they have long assumed to be true: Increasing amounts of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, such as carbon dioxide, are trapping heat from escaping back into space and are thereby causing global warming.

The observations of what is known as radiative forcing were made over the course of 11 years between 2000 and 2010 from two locations in North America, in Oklahoma and the North Slope of Alaska. Highly specialized instruments in both locations were used to measure thermal infrared energy fluctuations and analyze the source of such changes.

The study, published Wednesday in the advance online edition of the journal Nature, explores the Earth's energy account balance. It found that over time, the planet is running a surplus of energy at the surface, causing global air and ocean temperatures to increase with a wide variety of mostly negative impacts.

Before this study, scientists already knew that the energy balance was tilted in the direction of a growing surplus, but they lacked precise measurements at the surface. The researchers were also able to trace this energy surplus mainly to manmade emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases through the burning of fossil fuels such as coal and oil, as well as forest fires.

Read more and watch the amazing video from NASA here:

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Growthink really understands how to create compelling business plans and raise capital, and Growthink's Capital Raising Products succeed in infusing this knowledge.
-John Morris
Managing Director, GKM Ventures,
Board of Governors, Tech Coast Angels

Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Watch the amazing video of what NASA recorded by satellite from 2000 to 2010

No comment yet.
Scooped by Marc Kneepkens!

Startup promises hassle-free solar ownership for anyone

Startup promises hassle-free solar ownership for anyone | Investing in Renewable Energy |
You won't need space on your roof for a solar array – or a lot of extra cash – to invest in solar energy with CloudSolar.

Investing in solar could get a whole lot easier, and a whole lot more affordable, once this solar startup launches because it removes several of the barriers to wider adoption of this clean energy source.

Many of us who advocate for getting more solar power on the grid aren't necessarily going solar ourselves right now; and while we all might have reasons of our own for that, several of the most common ones may soon not really be an issue at all anymore if CloudSolar gets enough traction.

The economics of residential solar are getting better and better every day, but there are still a few barriers for many of us. Some of us who might have the money to go solar may either lack the space for rooftop solar panels, or don't have ownership of the roof, such as those who live in multi-unit buildings. And some of us who do have ownership of our roof, and do have the space, don't have the capital or credit to finance a full solar array.

One answer to making solar energy more accessible, and making solar investment easier than ever, might come from CloudSolar's unique model, where anyone can buy into solar for as little as $50 USD. The company aims to "revolutionize the solar industry" by allowing people to have ownership of their own solar panels, and enjoy the financial and environmental benefits from them, while CloudSolar takes care of everything else. Literally everything else.

Read more :

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Great info. Loving your business plan template, makes writing a plan almost fun.

Craig Heppell
Nambour, Queensland

Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Solar is gaining interest everywhere. More options are becoming available all the time. This is a very interesting one.

No comment yet.
Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Ideas, Innovation & Start-ups!

Portable energy mill provides both wind and solar power at disaster sites

Portable energy mill provides both wind and solar power at disaster sites | Investing in Renewable Energy |

After large scale disasters such hurricanes or floods, affected areas are often left without power, making it much harder for emergency services to find and help survivors. Delays of minutes or hours can often mean the difference between life and death. We have already seen the Ambulance Drone — an all purpose medical toolkit that can be flown into emergency situations, and now WindStream Technologies has developed the MobileMill — a portable trailer which harvests both solar and wind power, designed for first responders at disaster sites where other power sources have been knocked out. Read more here:

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Growthink helped me with two business plans. I liked working with Anna Vitale because she was a professional yet personable and that gave me a sense of trust. Keep up the good work.”

Phil Marcu

Via Justin Jones
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Great innovations!

No comment yet.
Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Zero Footprint!

Why solar costs will fall another 40% in just two years

Why solar costs will fall another 40% in just two years | Investing in Renewable Energy |
Even the world's biggest fossil fuel producers recognise that solar is winning the cost war. In the next two years, solar costs will fall even further - as much as 40 per cent. Here's how.


It’s been one of the big themes at the World Energy Future Conference here in Abu Dhabi. Solar, and other technologies such as wind power, are no longer more expensive than traditional fossil fuels in many parts of the world. Indeed, they are cheaper.


A day earlier, the International Renewable Energy predicted that solar costs would fall substantially in coming years, underlying its competitiveness with fossil fuels. If government policy makers did not understand this, IRENA said, then they risked making bad decisions about their energy future.


While much of the cost reduction over the last 5-10 years has resulted from polysilicon price reductions, future cost reductions will necessarily come from non panel related balance of system costs.


Inverter and racking cost are also declining.

Installation costs will fall by one third in the US.

Sales/Customer Acquisition Cost will fall even further.


More here:

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

"I have been receiving "Growing Your Empire" newsletter for about a year, and I appreciate the advice that you have been sharing on entrepreneurship - I have leveraged the information you've provided many times."
Alex Stolyar

Via Daniel LaLiberte
Daniel LaLiberte's curator insight, January 20, 7:11 PM

As renewable energy continues to grow even cheaper, fossil fuel costs are either going to go up because of reduced supply of cheaply exploited resources, or fall due to collapsing demand, or some of both.  Fossil fuels ought to cost enough to pay for the clean up all the CO2 and other pollution that results from burning. But regardless, the encroaching competition from renewable energy will eventually catch up and "clean up".  The question is not whether it will happen but how soon?

Scooped by Marc Kneepkens!

100 Engineers Are Trying to Bring Elon Musk's Hyperloop Dream to Life

100 Engineers Are Trying to Bring Elon Musk's Hyperloop Dream to Life | Investing in Renewable Energy |
Thanks to an ambitious think-tank upstart, the bold billionaire's vision for a Jetson-esque 'fifth mode of transport' is inching closer to reality.

Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Musk is not a dreamer. He picks up dreams and turns them into reality.

No comment yet.
Scooped by Marc Kneepkens!

This glass sphere might revolutionize solar power on Earth

This glass sphere might revolutionize solar power on Earth | Investing in Renewable Energy |

German architect André Broessel, of Rawlemon, has looked into his crystal ball and seen the future of renewable energy. In this case it’s a spherical sun-tracking solar energy-generating globe — essentially a giant glass marble on a robotic steel frame. But this marble is no toy. It concentrates both sunlight and moonlight up to 10,000 times — making its solar harvesting capabilities 35 percent more efficient than conventional dual-axis photovoltaic designs.

André Broessel was a finalist in the World Technology Network Award 2013 with the globe’s design and afterward produced this latest version, called Betaray, which can concentrate diffuse light such as that from a cloudy day.

André Broessel’s latest invention looks like something out of a superhero movie. The bifrost device depicted in Thor, perhaps, or Eric Selvig’s wormhole machine in The Avengers.

In reality, though, it’s a stand-alone solar energy generator. And if nothing else, it’s much more interesting to look at than your standard photovoltaic solar panel.

But Broessel’s invention may be more than just aesthetically pleasing. According to a recent report in Fast Company, the German architect touts his orb-like system as being 35 percent more efficient than a standard panel, doing even better when combined with a tool for tracking the sun.

“For the last 40 years we have tried to capture this energy with PV panels,” Broessel says in the promotional video on his Indiegogo campaign for his company, Rawlemon“But the earth is moving around the sun, and the fixed panel is losing its efficiency.”

The rotating glass orb, he says, brings in energy from the sun and concentrates it onto a small surface of tiny solar panels. The ball lens is able to concentrate and diffuse light on one small focal point, making it more sustainable (less material used to

create solar cells, most of which are made from crystalline silicon) and more efficient. Additionally, Broessel says poor weather would not impact the device, because of a built-in weather tracking system.


“We can squeeze more juice out of the sun,” Broessel says.

In terms of whether the device will actually bring meaningful improvements to the renewable energy sector to reduce the effects of man-made climate change, the outlook seems promising on its face. The amount of energy solar panels can derive from the sun is low compared to the energy that the sun can actually produce — some only convert about 20 percent of their available energy into electrical power — so a device that can better concentrate the sun’s energy would be surely welcome. And, as Stanford University’s associate director on energy and sustainable development Mark Thurber told the Wall Street Journal back in April, “the most intriguing renewable energy technologies are those that have the most room to improve.” In terms of solar, he said at the time, “perhaps concentrating solar power can make significant strides as we learn from the first large installations.”

Broessel’s device is not yet available in the market. He is trying to raise $120,000 on his Indiegogo campaign for further testing, and for patent applications he’s filed in five jurisdictions. You can watch his promotional video below.

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

No comment yet.
Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Pitch it!!

Eric Schmidt’s Farm2050 Collective Will Back Agriculture Tech To Feed Earth’s Growing Population | TechCrunch

Eric Schmidt’s Farm2050 Collective Will Back Agriculture Tech To Feed Earth’s Growing Population  |  TechCrunch | Investing in Renewable Energy |

We’ll need to produce 70% more food by 2050 to sustain a world population expected to grow to 10 billion. Yet agriculture startups struggle to get the funding, manufacturing, and test facilities needed to build tech that could boost food production. To fix that disconnect, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt’s Innovation Endeavors and Flextronics Lab IX today launched Farm2050, a collective that will support AgTech startups with capital, design, manufacturing, and test farms to try out their inventions.

The Farm2050 partnership includes Google, DuPont, Agco, UTC’s Sensitech, and 3D Robotics. Flextronics’ Head of Lab IX Lior Susan tells me “It’s still not sexy to do agriculture. You don’t see IPOs and big acquisitions that pull Sand Hill into the game.” That’s why Farm2050 is necessary to foster an AgTech ecosystem.

Farm2050 is now inviting startups to pitch it ideas to address the global food challenge.

“You see a concentration where 90% of entrepreneurs are focused on 10% of the problems”, Innovation Endeavors’ managing director Dror Berman tells me. Agriculture has been really underserved. You can build a ton of technology companies here that really matter.”

Farming is already a huge market, with net farm income worldwide estimated at $120 billion a year. Yet the support structure hasn’t been there to accelerate technological advancements in agriculture as fast as in other industries. When there are breakthroughs, though, they truly help humanity.

Berman says “100 years ago we saw the Haber-Bosch process enable fertilizer development. 50 years ago we saw the refrigerated truck facilitate the long-distance transport of perishables. And today we’re seeing the emergence of robotics and machine learning applied to agricultural practices.”

Farm2050 is open to any ideas that boost food production. Specifically, though, it will be looking for startups working on how robotics and data science can advance the ways farmers seed, cultivate, and harvest all kinds of food.

The collective format that includes a range of companies, rather than just being a few investors, is designed to let corporations get involved with sparking AgTech innovation beyond just offering money. Berman tells me corporations frequently create incubators or fund startups, when really it’s their tech and expertise that could help most. Farm2050 will harness those resources, such as supply chain expertise, or sensor technologies, to help the companies it backs.

The mission-driven Farm2050 collective is a prime example of social venture capital, where returns are calculated not just in dollars returned, but good done. Susan concludes, “Our children and our grandchildren need to live here. If people who invest in startups can’t help, that kind of sucks.”

If you’ve watched Interstellar, you’ve seen a vivid portrayal of the desperate times a global food shortage could cause. If any entrepreneurs out there are on the fence about whether to get into AgTech, I hope that film and today’s announcement convince them there’s something more important to build than social games and photo apps.

More: Eric Schmidt’s Farm2050 Collective Will Back Agriculture Tech To Feed Earth’s Growing Population | TechCrunch

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Marc Kneepkens's insight:

An opportunity for ag startups

Marc Kneepkens's curator insight, November 20, 2014 10:02 AM

Finally some tech giants are addressing some real problems. Here is an opportunity for agricultural ideas and startups.

Scooped by Marc Kneepkens!

Wells Fargo Launches $10M Clean Tech Startup Fund

Wells Fargo has launched a $10 million environmental grant for clean technologystartups.

The Innovation Incubator (IN2) program, funded by the Wells Fargo Foundation and co-administered by the Energy Department’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory, aims to foster the development of early stage clean technologies for commercial buildings.

Wells Fargo says the program is the first of its kind within the banking industry.

Clean technology startups will be identified and recommended by Wells Fargo’s network of technical, financial and industry advisors at laboratories and research facilities across the country. The first of three rounds of selected companies will be announced in early 2015, and will receive up to $250,000 for business development needs, research and testing support at NREL’s facility in Golden, Colorado, along with coaching and mentorship from Wells Fargo.

An independent advisory board of nearly a dozen industry leaders representing the commercial building sector, academia, community organizations, successful entrepreneurs and technical experts will select the final companies to be included in the IN2 program.

The IN2 program will source candidates from universities and regional accelerators providing a pipeline of early stage technology companies to apply. Selected technology companies will reach specific technology milestones in the NREL lab with an opportunity to deploy and field test in Wells Fargo buildings.

In 2013, commercial and residential buildings consumed 40 percent of all energy used in the US, costing an estimated $413 billion, according to the DOE.

The first year of the IN2 program will focus on sustainable buildings technologies that will provide cost savings and reduce the overall negative impact of the built environment on human health and the natural environment. Qualifying technologies may include the following: energy efficiency, lighting, net zero-energy, water efficiency, indoor environmental quality enhancement, waste reduction, materials efficiency, operations and maintenance optimization, datacenter facilities management. Over time, the program will expand its portfolio of selected companies and the scope of clean technology sectors.

The IN2 program is funded by the Wells Fargo Foundation as part of its 2020 Environmental Commitment to provide $100 million to environmentally focused nonprofits and universities by 2020.

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Mainstream banking is looking for trends. Great for startups in the renewable energy sector.

No comment yet.
Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Venture Capital Stories!

Venture Capital Firm Invests in Start-Ups With a Social Mission

Venture Capital Firm Invests in Start-Ups With a Social Mission | Investing in Renewable Energy |
Over the last decade, the managing director of DBL Investors, Nancy Pfund, has quietly built a reputation as the go-to venture capitalist for companies looking to make a social impact.

When the co-founders of SolarCity, Lyndon and Peter Rive, along with their cousin Elon Musk, were raising money for their solar energy start-up in 2007, they called on just one outside investor. It wasn’t Andreessen Horowitz, Sequoia Capital or any of the other prominent Silicon Valley venture capital firms, but a $75 million fund managed under the umbrella of JPMorgan Chase.

The fund’s managing director, Nancy Pfund, isn’t a household name. Yet over the last decade, she has quietly built a reputation as the go-to venture capitalist for companies looking to make a social impact.

This strategy has gained momentum in recent years. Consumer companies like Toms shoes and Warby Parker eyewear have demonstrated that altruism can also be good for business. Ms. Pfund’s own track record is a testament to investing with a social purpose. Five of the 18 companies in her first fund, which was started in 2004, have gone public, including SolarCity, Pandora Media and Tesla Motors.

“The Tesla I.P.O. was a seminal event for impact investing,” Ms. Pfund said about the company’s initial public offering in 2010.

Ms. Pfund and Mr. Musk, an early investor in Tesla, met in 2006 when she first invested in the company. “I liked her emphasis on the double bottom line, which is how I invest,” said Mr. Musk, who became Tesla’s chief executive in 2008. “Also, she wasn’t pushing for a quick return like some V.C.s.”

A year later, when SolarCity was raising money, Mr. Musk suggested that the founders should contact Ms. Pfund. “Nancy is very strong on the policy side, which helped us a lot,” said Lyndon Rive, the chief executive of the company, which went public in December 2012.

In 2008, Ms. Pfund founded her own venture capital firm, DBL Investors, in San Francisco when JPMorgan spun out her fund, which she continues to manage. “I never had aspirations to run my own firm,” said Ms. Pfund, 59. She started her venture capital career at Hambrecht & Quist in 1984 and stayed with the firm after it was acquired by Chase. Ms. Pfund has long had a personal interest in social and environmental issues — she was an intern at the Sierra Club after college and helped oversee Hambrecht & Quist’s philanthropic arm — but it wasn’t until she started the social impact fund for JPMorgan in 2004 that the two, seemingly disparate aspects of her résumé came together.

DBL stands for “double bottom line,” the notion that a company can make money — the first bottom line — and make a difference — the second one. The concept “was somewhat polarizing” even just 10 years ago, Ms. Pfund said. “People said, ‘You should invest to make money and then give away your money to do good.’ ” Even today, the DBL approach is relatively rare because impact investors, as the niche is known, typically put their social missions first.

“We always start with the first bottom line,” Ms. Pfund said. “If a company is not successful, there can be no impact.”

Soon after striking out on her own, Ms. Pfund teamed up with Cynthia Ringo, a former telecommunications executive and managing director at VantagePoint Ventures, to start a second fund. That one, which raised $150 million in 2010, is now nearly fully invested with 23 companies.

Many of the companies in DBL Investors’ portfolio have an obvious social impact, like clean energy or sustainable products, but the universe of potential investments is much broader than that. “Part of our mission is to show that companies can have a profound impact regardless of their business,” Ms. Pfund said.

In fact, Ms. Pfund and Ms. Ringo view early-stage investing as an opportunity to make socially responsible practices a keystone of corporate culture. “This isn’t like saying, ‘Let’s have a toy drive,’ ” Ms. Ringo said. “The second bottom line needs to be integral to how the company is doing business.”

Consider another graduate of DBL Investors — Pandora Media, the Internet radio company. DBL Investors backed Pandora in 2006, when it had 50 full-time equivalent employees working in its headquarters in Oakland, Calif. “Friends gave me a look of concern when I told them where I worked,” recalled Joseph J. Kennedy, who was chief executive from July 2004 to September 2013. Yet, Pandora’s commitment to staying in the city — where it now has more than 700 employees — was an asset as far as Ms. Pfund was concerned. “One of the pillars of social impact is job creation, especially in places that need jobs,” said Ms. Pfund, who credits Pandora with helping bring in restaurants, services and other employers to the area. “It can have a huge multiplier effect.”

When Pandora wanted to get involved in teaching music in local schools, Ms. Pfund’s team facilitated that. “They helped us take a vague idea and turn it into a reality,” said Mr. Kennedy, noting that the program is now in its eighth year. “As a start-up, you have a million things to worry about, so it’s helpful to have someone helping you focus on this other area, which ultimately becomes part of who you are as a company.”

One stipulation of investment is that companies must work with DBL to identify their social impact goals and report on them twice a year. DBL Investors has one person on its eight-member staff who focuses on measuring the social impact of its investments. Most of the companies in the two funds are making an impact in multiple areas. At the same time that SolarCity is helping convert households and businesses to solar power, for instance, it employs more than 7,500 people, including hundreds of veterans, and many in areas where jobs aren’t as readily available.

In another example, Revolution Foods, a portfolio company based in Oakland that prepares healthy meals and snacks that it distributes to 2,000 stores and about 1,000 schools, provides about half of its school meals to students on the free- and reduced-lunch program. The company has roughly $100 million in annual sales and employs more than 1,000 people, many in low-income areas. The company’s chief executive and co-founder, Kristin Groos Richmond, credits Ms. Pfund with helping fine-tune the business model and making introductions to other investors, including Stephen M. Case.

A relative newcomer, the RealReal, specializes in selling luxury clothing on consignment but is based in Hunters Point, a low-income neighborhood in San Francisco, where it has about 250 employees. “For many of the people they’re hiring, this is the first quality job they’ve had, with living wages, health benefits, a 401(k) and stock options,” Ms. Ringo said. “The C.E.O. is tremendously committed to employee development and much earlier than many other companies.”

It’s difficult to quantify, but a focus on the second bottom line ultimately enhances the first bottom line, Mr. Musk said.

“When a company works on a product or service that is truly useful to society, that increases the probability of a good financial outcome,” he said. At the very least, it helps with recruiting and retaining employees. “Smart and talented people have a lot of options, and it means something if they can make money and have a positive impact on society,” he added.

For their part, investors seem to be coming around to the idea that doing good and doing well are not mutually exclusive. When Ms. Pfund raised her first fund, investors were primarily banks needing to invest in low-income areas as part of the Community Reinvestment Act. The second fund’s limited partners also include pensions, institutions and family offices. “The impact field has blossomed, and we’re seeing a lot of interest from outside our asset class,” said Ms. Pfund, who is teaching a class on impact investing at Stanford Business School.

Meanwhile, Ms. Pfund and Ms. Ringo say they’re hearing from more entrepreneurs who want to incorporate a second — or third or fourth — bottom line into their business models and need guidance. “We are an impact muse, if you will,” Ms. Pfund said. “We help them pull out ideas, and we help them implement them.”

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Marc Kneepkens's curator insight, October 28, 2014 8:25 AM

Good to see VC's invest in companies that make an impact and offer change.

Scooped by Marc Kneepkens!

World of clean energy 'feasible' by mid-century

World of clean energy 'feasible' by mid-century | Investing in Renewable Energy |

International researchers, in what they believe is the most comprehensive global assessment of clean energy’s potential, report that a low-carbon system could supply the world’s electricity needs by 2050.

LONDON, 10 October, 2014 − A global low-carbon energy economy is not only feasible, it could double electricity supply by 2050 while actually reducing air and water pollution, according to new research.

Even though photovoltaic power requires up to 40 times more copper than conventional power plants, and wind power uses up to 14 times more iron, the world wins on a switch to low-carbon energy.

These positive findings are published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by Edgar Hertwich and Thomas Gibon, of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology Department of Energy and Process Engineering.

Life-cycle assessment

They and international research colleagues report that they have made – as far as they know – the first global life-cycle assessment of the economic and environmental costs of renewable and other clean sources of energy in a world that responds to the threat of climate change.

Other studies have looked at the costs in terms of health, pollutant emissions, land use change or the consumption of metals. The Norwegian team set out to consider the lot.

There were some things they had to leave out: for instance, bioenergy, the conversion of corn, sugar cane or other crops to ethanol for fuel, because that would also require a comprehensive assessment of the food system; and nuclear energy, because they could not reconcile what they called “conflicting results of competing assessment approaches”.

But they tried to consider the whole-life costs of solar power, wind power, hydropower and gas and coal generators that used carbon capture and storage to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

They took into account the demand for aluminium, copper, nickel and steel, metallurgical grade silicon, flat glass, zinc and clinker. They thought about the comparative costs of “clean” and “dirty” power generation, and they considered the impact of greenhouse gases, particulate matter, toxicity in ecosystems, and the eutrophication– the overwhelming blooms of plankton − of the rivers and lakes.

They also assessed the impact of such future power plants on the use of land, and they made allowances for the economic benefits of increasing amounts of renewable power in the extraction and refinement of minerals needed to make yet more renewable power.

More efficient

Then they contemplated two scenarios: one in which global electricity production rose by 134% by 2050, with fossil fuels accounting for two-thirds of the total; and one in which electricity demand in 2050 rises by 13% less because energy use becomes more efficient.

They found that to generate new sources of power, demand for iron and steel might increase by only 10%. Photovoltaic systems would require between 11 and 40 times the amount of copper that is needed for conventional generators, but even so, the demand by 2050 would add up to just two years’ worth of current copper production.

Their conclusion? Energy production-related climate change mitigation targets are achievable, given a slight increase in the demand for iron and cement, and will reduce the current emission rates of air pollutants.

“Only two years of current global copper and one year of iron will suffice to build a low-carbon energy system capable of supplying the world’s electricity needs by 2050,” the authors say. – Climate News Network

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

No comment yet.
Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Trending Intelligence!

Google to build gigantic 120-megawatt data center in the Netherlands

Google to build gigantic 120-megawatt data center in the Netherlands | Investing in Renewable Energy |
The $772 million facility in Eemshaven will benefit from proximity to the landing point of major international submarine cables, as well as a good deal of renewable energy, reports say.

Google is set to build an enormous data center in Eemshaven, in the Dutch province of Groningen. It will invest €600 million ($772 million) in the project over four years.

The company already uses a TCN-owned, 20-megawatt data center in Eemshaven, which pitches itself as an ideal location for such things – it has access to many kinds of renewable energy (which Google says it will use), it’s a landing station for international internet cables, and it has a mild climate that’s conducive to cheaper cooling (the data center will be “free cooled”, using cold air and so-called gray water.)

According to a Google blog post, the company will continue using its rented facility in Eemshaven. The new 120-megawatt data center will create around 150 permanent jobs in Groningen. Construction will begin in 2016 and the facility should be fully operational by the end of 2017. Apple has also reportedly considered siting a new data center there, and Microsoft is also building a large new data center in Middenmeer, Noord-Holland.

Google already has three major European data centers of its own: in Hamina, Finland; St. Ghislain, Belgium; and Dublin, Ireland. The need to build out capacity in Europe comes not only from requirements for low latency from Google’s streaming media services, but also from unease — particularly among enterprise customers — over using services that are based in the U.S., due to the revelations of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Via Pierre Levy, Gebeyehu B. Amha
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Glad to see Google chose renewable energy consistently.

No comment yet.