Insider Secrets

Insider Secrets

Learn how the PROs are making money from the oil and energy market.

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Alternative Energy

  • Getting Ahead in the Solar Energy Market

    The solar industry has come a long way in recent years, but now companies around the world are grappling with a solar photovoltaic (PV) industry in rapid transition, with significant oversupply and prices in rapid decline. Dominant players are struggling; emerging players are seizing market share. Each company is trying to turn the current upheaval into their opportunity to emerge as the new top player.But what do policymakers do to ensure the top players are located in their country? Which public sector strategies are successfully supporting local industries?World Resources Institute (WRI) previewed early research on the side-lines of the Rio+20…

  • IEA Says more Clean Energy Investment Needed to Avoid the Worst Climate Impacts

    Climate-change skeptics like to call environmentalists “alarmists” because of their call for urgent action to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions. The skeptics say the science is too uncertain, that there’s no rush to act, and those who argue otherwise are sanctimonious lefties out of touch with reality.For them it’s drill baby, drill.It’s a convenient way of dismissing bad news, which is why it’s important when traditionally conservative organizations like the International Energy Agency weigh in on the issue with their own call for accelerated action.This week, the Paris-based agency with an oil-soaked history said the world, if it has any hope of…

  • Rough Years Ahead for the Solar Industry

    Bloomberg New Energy Finance’s (BNEF) workshop presentation of its Q2:2012 outlook for photovoltaic panels has attracted a lot of attention.  Before the presentation BNEF leaked the workshop slides to Forbes, but then complained when Forbes published a story using them. Not only did BNEF hold the workshop in China but it had the temerity to tell the audience that it would take until at least 2014 to work off the supply glut of PV panels around the world.  Think about that for a moment.The use of feed-in-tariff subsidies, treasury tax grants, production tax credits, investment tax credits and other subsidies used…

  • Innovative Ways of Producing Biofuel - Tobacco, Whiskey, and Seaweed

    Biofuels have fallen out of favour in many environmental and political circles. But in the world of science, researchers around the world are working on some very innovative ways to produce gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel from more sustainable feedstocks.Here’s a look at three cool recent developments in biofuels:Smoke ‘em if you got ‘em: Scientists at the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab in California are working on converting tobacco plants into fuel powerhouses. The project is funded by the Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy. The scientists selected the plant because tobacco is “grown in large tracts throughout the U.S…

  • Russia's Nuclear Industry is a Disaster Waiting to Happen

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  • Renewable Energy Stocks that Provide Great Investment Opportunities

    Despite ever-rising carbon dioxide emissions, sinking solar stocks, and perceived falls in government support for renewables, the low-carbon investment theme is “alive and well”, according to analysts at Citi.In a note accompanying an update of its ‘Climate Change Universe’, published today, the US financial services giant has identified 20 stocks that provide “actionable investment” opportunities to tap into the investment theme, which it says will see an estimated $12 trillion of investment over the next two decades. “With so many sectors clearly still impacted by the theme, and so much new capital being/going to be invested, we believe that the…

  • Renewable Energy Sees a Record $257 Billion of Investment in 2011

    The UN Environment Program (UNEP) announced in a new report that in 2011 global renewable energy investment reached a record $257 billion; a 17 percent increase from 2010, and a 600% increase over the past seven years.The solar energy sector saw the largest amount of investment, up from 2010 by 52% to an impressive $147 billion, more than half the total investment in the renewable energy market. This increase was due to an explosion in the number of installations of rooftop panels in the Italy and Germany, along with large-scale concentrated solar thermal projects in the US and Spain.In terms…

  • IEA: Adopting Cleantech Could Save $100 Trillion by 2050

    The once staid International Energy Agency continues its string of blunt, must-read reports laying bare the reality of our climate and energy system.While so many “experts” and politicians make hand-waving pronouncements about how the primary solution to climate change is more R&D or how cheap natural gas is the answer to our problems, the IEA is one of the few international bodies with a comprehensive energy and economic model that cuts through the BS.As their new report, Energy Technology Perspectives 2012, makes clear, new natural gas investments can play at best a limited, very temporary role “if climate objectives are…

  • The Reality Behind the Most Common Biofuel Myths

    What are the most-told myths for biofuels, and what does science actually tell us?The Digest separates the fact from the fiction.The EU and the United States are preparing for what appears to be an extended debate on the merits and structure of biofuels mandates. Especially in the US, where the Renewable Fuel Standard is coming under blistering attack from the coalition of oil, food and environmental groups that successfully sold the myth of “food vs fuel”.Attacks from the usual opponents are generally in the form of statements that sound vaguely scientific, or fact-based. Often with a scientist in tow. Beware.…

  • Clean Energy: Ignore the Critics and Follow the Investors

    Google is backing it. So is Warren Buffett, America’s most-watched investor. GE, one of the world’s biggest manufacturers, is too.Each of these corporate icons is placing big bets and hundreds of millions of dollars on a future powered by wind and solar power. Apple just joined them, announcing plans to power its main U.S. data centre in Maiden, North Carolina, entirely with renewable energy by the end of this year. So why – yet again – are pundits making dire warnings about prospects for renewable energy?The answer is that the clean tech industry is at a critical crossroads.On the one…

Martin tiller