U.S. Alternative Energy Correspondent
Nichola's Feed
Feb 12, 2015

Apple deal, tax change could spark corporate solar stampede

By Nichola Groom

(Reuters) – Apple Inc’s deal to buy nearly $1 billion of power from a massive First Solar Inc plant could be the first of a stampede of contracts driven by the looming change in a solar tax incentive that makes such projects particularly attractive.

Together with a sharp drop in the cost of solar power and corporate efforts to rack up green credentials, the expiring tax subsidies have large energy purchasers taking a hard look at buying solar under big long-term contracts.

Feb 11, 2015

Apple in big solar power deal, market cap closes over $700 billion

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Apple Inc (AAPL.O: Quote, Profile, Research) will buy about $850 million of power from a new California solar farm to cut its energy bill, the iPhone maker said on Tuesday as its stock market value closed above $700 billion for the first time.

The First Solar Inc (FSLR.O: Quote, Profile, Research) plant, with the capacity to power the equivalent of 60,000 homes, will be used to supply electricity for Apple’s new campus in Silicon Valley, and its other offices and 52 stores in the state, Chief Executive Tim Cook said at a Goldman Sachs technology conference in San Francisco.

Jan 28, 2015

How these energy geeks are reimagining an old school utility

Orange County, Ca (Reuters) – Welcome to the utility industry’s future – or at least that’s what Southern California Edison is hoping.

    Here in a non-descript, 53,500-square-foot building, the $12 billion utility’s research team is testing everything from charging electronic vehicles via cell phone to devices that smooth out the power created by rooftop solar panels.

Jan 12, 2015

New shows ‘Transparent’, ‘The Affair’ take top TV Golden Globes

By Nichola Groom

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (Reuters) – Two fresh new series, Showtime’s “The Affair” and Amazon’s “Transparent,” were catapulted into the spotlight on Sunday at Hollywood’s Golden Globe awards, taking home the night’s honors for best television drama and comedy.

Amazon.com Inc’s win for “Transparent” marked the first time an online streaming service took home a Golden Globe for best series. The show, about a transgender woman who comes out to her three adult children, won for best comedy series.

Jan 9, 2015

Oil price slump taking a toll on US alternative fuels

Jan 8 (Reuters) – With gas pump prices lingering near their
lowest levels in five years, greener, cleaner alternative fuels
are taking a hit.

Makers of biodiesel, a fuel made from vegetable oil or
animal fats, are slashing prices and margins in a bid to stay
competitive with the price of diesel fuel, which is down more
than 20 percent from a year ago.

Nov 20, 2014

Henrik Fisker is back with a souped up Mustang

LOS ANGELES, Nov 20 (Reuters) – A year after the
government-backed electric car company bearing his name filed
for bankruptcy, Henrik Fisker is back.

The Danish designer on Thursday will unveil a souped up Ford
Mustang to be sold in limited numbers by Galpin Auto
Sports, a Southern California car dealership that specializes in
customizing vehicles.

Nov 19, 2014

Cadillac boss envisions $250,000 flagship car – in 2029

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Cadillac’s new boss believes General Motors’ premium brand could eventually sell ultra-luxury cars that retail for a quarter-million dollars by 2029.

“It is too early today for a $250,000 Cadillac,” said Johann de Nysschen, in an interview on Wednesday at the annual auto show here. “Fifteen years from now, it won’t be.”

Nov 19, 2014

Alfa Romeo expansion on track, Fiat Chrysler executive says

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – The sporty Alfa Romeo brand’s growth into one of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ main global brands, along with an imminent U.S. relaunch, is on target, its North American chief said at the Los Angeles Auto Show on Wednesday.

Reid Bigland, who also heads U.S. sales for the Chrysler Group, said FCA’s commitment of $6.5 billion to revamp Alfa Romeo makes the company’s lofty sales goal announced earlier this year “achievable.”

Nov 18, 2014

Exclusive: NRG betting big on rooftop solar in California

By Nichola Groom

(Reuters) – U.S. power company NRG Energy Inc aims to grab a bigger piece of the residential solar industry by expanding its business in California, the nation’s biggest solar market, and offering a new financing option to its customers.

NRG Home Solar on Tuesday will announce two new offices and plans to add 100 employees in the Golden State. The company is already a top competitor on the East Coast but has lagged rivals such as SolarCity Corp and Vivint Solar Inc in California.

Nov 18, 2014

Toyota aims to replicate Prius success with fuel cell Mirai

NEWPORT BEACH California (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp on Monday said it will introduce its first mass-market fuel cell car in the United States next year, hoping to replicate the success of its Prius hybrid with a vehicle that runs on hydrogen instead of gasoline.

The four-person sedan named Mirai, the Japanese word for “future”, will be at California dealerships in the fourth quarter of 2015. Only 200 will be available in the United States next year, with volumes increasing to 3,000 by 2017, executives said at a press conference in Newport Beach, California.