Are Home Owners Overpaying for Solar?

A recent analysis of nearly 17,000 projects reported to the California Solar Initiative has revealed a 40% average difference in the prices that solar contractors charge customers. It is a buyer beware market, with some solar contractors charging nearly double the price of others. From July through December of 2013, the average residential and small […] Read more

The 2014 Clean Trillion Report

More investment is needed to avert the worst impacts of climate change. Without such investments we will not be able to avoid a temperature increase of more than two degrees Celsius (2 °C) above pre-industrial levels (this is the upper threshold agreed upon by scientists and governments in 2010). On Wednesday January 15, the non-profit […] Read more

Conergy Launches $100M Commercial Solar Fund

Germany’s Conergy, which like SunPower, both manufactures and installs soar arrays, today announced (Jan. 14) that it launched the Conergy Fund I program, a $100 million fund to support the development of large-scale projects in the U.S. The fund will finance solar projects between 500 kilowatts and 25 megawatts in size. “The Fund is ideal […] Read more

Google Hearts Wind Power

Google announced yesterday that it has ponied up $75 million for a wind farm in Carson County, TX. In it’s lock box of wind farm assets, this is number 15 for the Internet giant. Patterson Energy Group (NASDAQ:PEGI), one of my top picks for 2014, is developing the project, which provides enough juice to power 56,000 […] Read more

Portland Oregon Launches ‘Solar Forward’ Crowdfunding Effort

Oliver P. Lent Elementary School in Portland, OR is set to receive solar panels in 2014 as part of the city’s Solar Forward campaign. To complete the project–the second of the campaign– $50,000 needs to be raised. Of the $50,000 goal, $20,000 has been donated by organizations including SolarWorld, Portfolio 21 Investments, Umpqua Bank, Wells Fargo and the […] Read more

60 Minutes Disses Cleantech Industry

You would think CBS’s 60 Minutes would have learned from its recent Bengazi debacle, but apparently not - evidenced by this Sunday’s extremely poor and inaccurate report, this time on the Cleantech Industry. After being pleasantly surprised that 60 Minutes would begin 2014 with a segment on Cleantech, it immediately became clear that the only purpose of the “Cleantech Crash” was to bash the industry. With a tone […] Read more

Intelligent Glass Maker View Raises $100M

Electrochromic windows, also known as dynamic glass or intelligent glass, are still a boutique productfor buildings. But as the technology attracts attention from large glass manufacturers and prominent investors, it may be inching closer to wider deployment. This morning, the California-based electrochromic glass producer View announced closure of a $100 million investment from Madrone Capital Partners, a private […] Read more

The Success of SolarCity

Before the company even went public, I devoted plenty of space in this letter to SolarCity (NASDAQ:SCTY). I’m a big fan of the financing model the company thrives on, and of course I’m particularly fond of anything that helps the solar industry maintain its rapid growth rate. I even personally took a position in the […] Read more

Solar Stats: Biggest and Best of 2013

This year was the first time someone could use the words “solar” and “mainstream” in the same sentence and be taken seriously. It’s still too early to call solar PV a truly mainstream energy technology, but as GTM Research VP Shayle Kann recently pointed out, it’s getting close. And there a lot of factors to consider […] Read more

Obama to Triple Governement Renewable Energy Use by 2020

President Obama used to campaign on his theme of hope and change.  Despite numerous political hurdles and geopolitical events that have diverted his attention since his 2008 election, it can proudly be said that the president has taken another step towards bringing about positive change. In his second State of the Union address, President Obama […] Read more

Google Beefs Up Solar Portfolio

Google might help the world search for just about—well, everything, but when the search and mobile giant is looking for investments, it’s increasingly turning to solar. On Nov. 14, Google joined forces with KKR and Recurrent Energy, investing in six more solar photovoltaic (PV) facilities that are being developed by Recurrent Energy. In all, the […] Read more

Treehouse’s One-Stop Shop for Solar

Few people walk into a car dealership and ask to see all of the 2.0 liter engines or only the 200 horsepower cars. Those technical specs are important, but most people shop by model, price or features. Yet homeowners that want to install solar panels often find themselves buried in a mound of technical details […] Read more

Apple’s Arizona Plant: 100% Run on Renewables

Apple says its new manufacturing plant in Arizona will run completely on solar and geothermal from day 1. If so, this would be the first US manufacturing plant that runs 100% on on-site renewable energy. They are being cagey about the details, saying only that they will work with Arizona utility, Salt River Project, to “construct a new solar power grid in the […] Read more

Jigar Shah: The King of Solar Business

Jigar Shah founded SunEdison in his late 20’s, in 2003, and has grown it into one of the world’s largest solar service companies. The company pioneered solar Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs), a revolutionary solar financing tool that brokers the sale of panels’ electricity over their lifetime. In a recent interview, Shah acknowledged, “financial innovation is […] Read more