U.S. Alternative Energy Correspondent
Nichola's Feed
Jun 26, 2011

Analysis: Venture firms seek “light” green tech bets

LOS ANGELES/SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Green is back in venture capital circles — but call it light green.

Having placed big bets on capital-intensive industries like solar and ethanol just as the financial crisis quashed interest in risky new technologies, early-stage investors these days have a limited appetite for start-ups that need large amounts of cash to bring their products to market.

Jun 21, 2011

CleanPath sets $800 million fund to invest in solar

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Renewable energy investment firm CleanPath LLC will pour more than $800 million into large photovoltaic solar projects in North America, the company said on Tuesday.

The company’s new fund is expected to invest in more than 1,000 megawatts of solar power plants over the next five years. The plants will range in size from 5 MW to over 100 MW.

Jun 15, 2011

Suntech says leases will “level the playing field”

SAN FRANCISCO, July 15 – (Reuters) – Chinese panel maker
Suntech Power Holdings Co Ltd (STP.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is getting into the solar
lease business to compete with venture-backed start-ups such as
SolarCity and SunRun, the vice president of project finance for
its U.S. business said on Wednesday.

The program, already launched in California, will expand to
up to six more states by the end of 2011, Scott Son said in an
interview, adding the initiative will increase panel sales by
helping the installers it partners with stay competitive.

Jun 15, 2011

Suntech launching U.S. financing programs

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Solar panel maker Suntech Power Holdings Co Ltd (STP.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) plans to launch four or five financing programs for the U.S. market in the next six to nine months, the head of its North American business said on Tuesday.

The initiatives will cover various parts of the industry, including residential solar, Suntech America President Steven Chan said at the Reuters Global Energy and Climate Summit in San Francisco.

Jun 13, 2011

Cree CEO says LED payback still too long

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – LED lights need to pay back hefty investments a lot quicker before they will go mainstream in offices and houses, the chief executive of LED maker Cree Inc (CREE.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) said on Monday.

Energy efficient light emitting diodes (LEDs) have long been seen as the future of the lighting industry, but mass adoption has been slower to materialize than many had hoped.

Jun 9, 2011

First Solar short interest at 37.4 pct of float

LOS ANGELES, June 9 (Reuters) – Short interest in First
Solar Inc (FSLR.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) rose to 37.4 percent of the company’s free
float as of May 31, according to Nasdaq data released on

The company’s short interest had been 30.8 percent of the
float as of May 13.

Jun 9, 2011

BrightSource-Chevron project incurs heavy losses

LOS ANGELES, June 9 (Reuters) – Solar thermal company
BrightSource Energy Inc said it had experienced “significant
cost overruns” with its enhanced oil recovery project with
Chevron Corp (CVX.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz).

BrightSource, which filed with U.S. securities regulators
for an initial public offering in April [ID:nN25219102], said
in an amended filing on Thursday that it had set aside $40.2
million to account for losses since the project’s inception,
$29.7 million more than it originally anticipated.

Jun 7, 2011

Solar price drop to weigh on SunPower, LDK

NEW YORK/LOS ANGELES, June 7 (Reuters) – Steep declines in
prices for solar products will shrink profit margins for
SunPower Corp (SPWRA.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and LDK Solar Co Ltd (LDK.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) this year,
the companies said on Tuesday.

Germany and Italy, the world’s two largest solar markets,
both have cut subsidies for the renewable energy source in
recent months, though manufacturers have ramped up output of
the modules that turn sunlight into electricity.

Jun 4, 2011

FERC says needs more time to consider PJM rule changes

LOS ANGELES, June 3 (Reuters) – Federal energy regulators on
Friday said proposed changes to how electricity load reductions
by large energy consumers are measured during system emergencies
may be “unlawful,” and that it needs more time to review the

The highly-anticipated decision by the Federal Energy
Regulatory Commission concerns the way so-called demand response
companies like EnerNOC Inc and Comverge Inc
record energy curtailments by their customers.

Jun 2, 2011

Groups sue to stop SunPower plant in California

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Two conservation groups and a California resident have sued to stop construction of a SunPower Corp solar power plant, saying the project would harm the rural area’s wildlife, air quality and natural beauty.

San Luis Obispo county community groups Carrizo Commons and North County Watch and local farmer and auto repair shop owner Michael Strobridge filed the lawsuit on May 20 in California state court.