SolarCity Files for IPO of Up to $201.3 Million

Solar panel installer SolarCity Corp filed with U.S. regulators to raise up to $201 million in an initial public offering that could help rekindle investor appetite for cleantech stocks. Shares of solar panel manufacturers have logged terrible performances in the last two years as plunging panel prices erased profits. But those lower prices have spurred demand for solar systems in the United States, helping companies like San Mateo, California-based SolarCity. SolarCity has expanded rapidly thanks to a business model that allows residential customers to lease solar panels for their roofs. Rather than paying the large upfront costs required for a solar installation, customers pay a monthly fee. Companies including Google Inc (GOOG.O) and U.S. Bancorp (USB.N) have provided funds to finance SolarCity’s projects. Those investors are able to collect a 30 percent federal tax credit for solar energy systems. Two of those funds are being audited by the Internal Revenue Service, SolarCity disclosed in its filing on Friday.

Vestas, Siemens Join 42 Companies to Cut Offshore Wind Costs

Vestas Wind Systems A/S (VWS) and Siemens AG (SIE), the biggest manufacturers of offshore wind turbines, and 42 other companies are participating in an initiative to lower power-generating costs for the technology and promote investments that may reach as much as $630 billion by 2035. The alliance, called Norstec, will meet today for the first time in London, the U.K. Department of Energy and Climate Change said in an e-mailed statement. The number of members has more than doubled since U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron announced the group’s formation in April. The group is seeking to drive development of offshore wind farms, an industry with the potential to employ as many as 185,000 people in the U.K. by 2020 and spur the laying of 8,000 kilometers (5,000 miles) of high voltage transmission cables in Europe’s northern waters by 2022, Norstec said today in a statement e-mailed by DECC.

Denmark Achieves Solar Energy Goal 8 Years Early

Earlier this month, Denmark announced that it had already achieved its 2020 goal for solar energy production. The country previously publicized its national goal to produce 200 megawatts of energy from solar power by the end of this decade. Now, it seems that rapidly growing demand for clean energy and a solar-friendly government has allowed this European country to exceed that goal eight years before the target. Danish experts now predict that if this growth continues, 2020 levels of solar energy production will be 100 times what was first expected. Have you ever been to Denmark? Few would call it a sunshine-rich country. In fact, it’s probably better known for its gray, cold winters. So what has allowed Denmark’s solar industry to expand so rapidly?  

Solar Energy Tax Credit May Be Saved By Washington Gridlock

A stalemate in Washington next year over tax reform could help solar developers by preserving the 30 percent investment tax credit for solar projects until it expires at the end of 2016. Regardless of who wins the Nov. 6 U.S. presidential election, Congress is expected to target tax loopholes and government subsidies as part of an effort to rein in federal spending and cut the deficit. But an agreement between Democrats and Republicans is not expected to come easily, and an impasse could keep the ax away form the tax credit. "It's one of those unusual situations where the gridlock that prevails around Congress could actually work to our benefit," Paul Detering, chief executive of San Francisco-based solar project developer Tioga Energy, told the Renewable Energy Finance Forum conference in San Francisco on Thursday.

Smart Cities: Intelligent Transportation and Smart Grid Standards - Part 2

Standards-based solutions were instrumental in the exponential growth of the Internet. For the Smart City, public electrical infrastructure ecosystem to expand, development, application and worker training of interoperability standards is an important strategic foundation from which to grow. This convergence of intelligent transportation systems with the Smart Grid, is allowing the Smart City concept to gain hold in many areas of the US and around the world.

States Advance Fuel Cell Growth

The fuel cell industry offers tremendous opportunity for manufacturing, engineering, and business development jobs, and once the supply chain, integrators, and service providers are factored in, could help the U.S. rebound and thrive in a competitive marketplace.

Solar Project Insurance

Typical insurance claims include solar module failures, inverter failures, start-up delays and damage caused by weather driven events such as floods, hail, and earthquakes

Bankable Data and Interoperability Standards

Data quality derives from the combination of accurate instruments plus Data Encoding Standards: one can take highly accurate data samples but if there is no agreement as to what the data means, the data could be considered to be of low quality because of its inability to improve the decision making process.

A Modular Hydrogen Facility at a University Campus

This facility is based around a modular platform, which provides maximum flexibility for the customer. It contains a hydrogen production component (electrolysers) and a hydrogen storage component (compressed gas cylinders).

The Trouble With DIY Solar

There is much to consider before pulling the trigger on a DIY solar kit and attempting a solar panel installation for your home (even if there is a YouTube video that shows you how easy it is to build your own solar panels).

Recent Cost Reductions Driven By Racking Innovation

Several new mounting systems have been developed that utilize polymers to enable cost reductions. Polymers are also roof friendly and non-corrosive, making this material a more attractive alternative to metal on flat roofs.

Aluminum Continues KnowledgeSurge in Cost-driven Solar

Light weight, strength and corrosion resistance represent three of the benefits. "Aluminum profiles can be made as structurally strong as needed for most applications,"

GE / Xtreme Power Partnership

GE's product technology provides the capability of producing vast quantities of energy and XP's controls and system integration technology provides the capability to connect to the electricity grid and manage the movement and storage of electricity.

Sharp to End Solar Panel Business in U.S., Europe, Kyodo Says

Sharp Corp. plans to end production and sales of solar cells and modules in the U.S. and Europe by March as part of a restructuring, Kyodo News said. Sharp also plans to sell three manufacturing plants for solar products in Japan’s Nara, Osaka and Toyama prefectures and consolidate production at its Sakai plant, Kyodo reported today, without saying where it got the information. Sharp wasn’t the source of the report and nothing has been decided, Miyuki Nakayama, a company spokeswoman, said by phone. Osaka-based Sharp plans to cut more than 10,000 jobs, or about 18 percent of its workforce, and is in talks to sell plants as it tries to return to profit, two people with knowledge of the proposal said yesterday. The job cuts and sales of television factories in Mexico, China and Malaysia, as well as U.S. solar developer Recurrent Energy LLC, were in the plan Sharp presented to lenders Sept. 24, the people said, declining to be identified because the matter isn’t public.

Brazil Expects $235 Billion in Renewable Energy During Decade

Brazil will see $235 billion of investments in renewable-energy and biofuel projects during the next ten years, Edison Lobao, the country’s mines and energy minister, said today at a United Nations event on sustainable energy in New York. The nation will install 36 gigawatts of hydroeletric plants, 12 gigawatts of biomass plants and 11 gigawatts of wind farms during that time, according to a transcript of the minister’s speech acquired by Bloomberg News.

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