Clean Investing: Value for the Everyone

Top Emerging Clean Technologies

Clean investing is on the frontier of new areas for investors everywhere. What some may not realize is how much it is not only going to help already developed countries but ones that are struggling with poverty and need it the most. Developed countries are going to see the benefits as they are less reliant on fossil fuels and can begin to go towards alternative ways of fueling their lives and economies. Developing countries are going to have the added benefits that many countries don’t have that will provide them with clean technology and cleaner more healthier lives that will be a benefit for any company rising up through the ranks.

This has already seeped into the large rich elite sector with people of higher incomes utilizing electric cars like Tesla, who now wants to start scaling Tesla to reach the lower classes eventually. But aside from helping other lower classes it will also help with the truly poor, we are talking below the world poverty line.

Helping the Lowest Earners

The truly amazing thing with these clean technologies is that they are going be a paradigm shift in rising economies. For example many industrial nations of this day and age such as America and China were all created off of the backs of big energy. That includes fossil fuels like natural gas, oil, coal and a myriad of non-renewables. This contributed to them becoming post-industrial nations, but unfortunately contributed to a lot of unnecessary pollution and trouble with renewable technologies.

Now new uprising countries in Africa, Asia, and parts of South America can skip past this point in their evolution of becoming developed countries. For example the more people that come out poverty will want to do consumer like things such as shopping and driving cars. They will want to begin traveling and doing things that people do in the developed world. Some may worry that this will contribute to more pollution, but as investors in clean energy there’s a chance to stop that and make this a change for the better.

Investments Needed

As more people begin investing in clean energies then they will become more widespread because that initial investment money will be going to renewables and not to dirtier types of technologies that contribute to pollution and non-sustainability. Aside from the environmental benefits there are economic incentives as well. For example Tesla has been such a successful company because the United States government backs it in a few different ways. They are promoting the growth of clean companies and given tax benefits and special help. Oftentimes they receive credits for zero emission and this helps promote the company.

Clean energy and investing is a new area and will need more research. By having investors more interested in cleaner technologies will help make them more widespread and offset costs for research and development. As better tech is produced this will scale down prices and help spread it all across different economic classes. Tesla and companies like Solar City are great opportunities for investors to get in this market and help spread the value.

 

U.S. Clean Tech Expert Works with China to Combat Pollution

A former Treasury secretary and Goldman Sachs chairman is using his connections and business savvy to power his conservation efforts. Henry Paulson is focusing his considerable energy into coming up with clean, green tech solutions to the growing crisis of China’s pollution.

Why reach out to China? “There are great synergies between our two countries,” Paulson said in his address at the Environmental Law and Policy Center’s annual gala event in Chicago this past September. He believes the United States and some of its private sectors could be the perfect solution to China’s pollution panic.

China’s Capital Issues “Red Alert” Pollution Levels

The country recently issued an unprecedented “red alert” for Beijing’s poor air quality, as its industrialized nation chokes in smog and carcinogenic toxins.The emergency red alert was declared, and much of Beijing was shut down in an effort to protect its citizens from the man-made pollutants. The city closed public schools, construction sites, and issued a restriction on the number of cars permitted on the roads.

The U.S. Embassy in China reported that at the time of the red alert, the air quality levels for Beijing were recorded at 250, which is classified as “very unhealthy.” 250 is at a level 10 times higher than the World Health Organization’s recommends can be safely inhaled.

Henry Paulson’s Clean Tech Initiative to Help Clean Chinese Air

Paulson has long been an outspoken environmentalist and a proponent for green energy and tech products to reduce the worldwide carbon footprint. And he’s uniquely qualified for the great challenge facing the one of the world’s largest country.

Paulson first approached Chinese officials on greener tech improvements in 2006, and has been working closely with them ever since. From 2000 to 2007, China’s carbon monoxide emissions doubled; a result that Paulson says can be directly traced back to the country’s rapid economic and population growths.

But it’s Paulson’s business experience that is proving most helpful in the teaming up of the U.S. and China in the fight against climate change. “Trade and economic ties are the glue that binds our two nations through the ups and downs of the bilateral relationship. As the two largest economies in the world, the U.S. and China not only have a shared opportunity to foster sustainable economic growth, but also to join together in addressing pressing global problems,” Paulson said.

Major Corporations Join China in Implementing Greener Changes

Even Apple is joining the effort. They plan to use their suppliers in China to provide 2,000 MW of clean energy over the next few years, and will “share the best practices in procuring clean energy and building high-quality renewable energy projects, and provide hands-on assistance to some suppliers in areas like energy efficiency audits, regulatory guidance and building strong partnerships to bring new clean energy projects to China.”

Dow Chemical Co., General Motors Co., Honeywell International Inc., Hyatt Hotels Corp., IBM Corp. and Wal-Mart Stores Inc are also joining Apple. As the world’s biggest technological empires try to help China’s air pollution crisis, they’re also helping to find future solutions to their own concerns in an increasingly industrialized (and therefore polluted) world.

San Diego One of the Top Clean Technology Cities

Out of all 50 states in the union, San Diego remains one of the top known for its thriving clean technology industry. While it ranked third in 2014, 2015 showed a small drop to 4th, but the city still has one of the most populous clean technology industries in the country.

What is Clean Technology?

The Clean Technology Trade Alliance, which works to expand the clean technology sector on a global scale, describes the industry as such: “A broad base of processes, practices and tools, in any industry that supports a sustainable business approach, including but not limited to: pollution control, resource reduction and management, end of life strategy, waste reduction, energy efficiency, carbon mitigation and profitability.”

From environmental scientists to the layman, the popular consensus has shifted and placed a high value on developments in this industry. It is becoming vital on a worldwide scale to invest in advances in this field so that everyone may benefit from the progress in areas such as solar power, wind power, biofuel, water filtration and more.

San Diego Cleantech Landscape Report

Cleantech San Diego is a nonprofit organization dedicated to positioning and furthering the city’s presence in the clean technology field on both a nationwide and global scale. Chubb, a clean energy-focused insurance company, and Clean Edge, the world’s foremost clean energy research firm, contributed to the study.

The 2015 San Diego Cleantech Landscape Report examined many different aspects of the clean technology industry in order to assess San Diego’s current position in the field. For instance, the report examined how many buildings built recently were equipped with modern energy-efficient features. It looked at advances in renewable power and green transportation, such as the production of hybrid and electric vehicles and the installation of charging stations across the city.

On the production side, the report also examined how much venture capital was invested in the clean technology industry and how many patents were applied for by companies and organizations in the city.

Other Top Cleantech Cities

According to the same report, San Francisco is the top clean technology city, as it has been for 2013 and 2014 as well. San Jose, CA comes in as number two, with Portland, OR in third.

After San Diego, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, CA, Seattle, WA, Boston, MA, Austin, TX and Chicago, IL round out the top ten.

San Diego’s Cleantech industry has grown substantially since 2007. In 2007, there were only 125 companies in the area. In 2015, more than 800 clean technology companies call San Diego home. But San Diego dropping from third to fourth could mean good things for the industry: it means more and more cities are beginning to make developing clean technology a priority.

While it is important and admirable for San Diego to rank amongst the top clean technology cities in the U.S., it is vital for other cities to continue improving their own efforts in the sector. It is only when clean technology becomes competitive and common will the benefits truly have an impact both financially and environmentally.

The Google Time Travelling Car Leaked

Google recently had an “oops” moment and leaked their mega plan of building a time travelling car. With Google, a company that’s actively developing self-driving cars, we all believe that they have the resources and genius minds to comfortably come up with anything — including a time travelling car.

So, when will it be in production? Will we actually be able to travel to both the future and past?

Slow down now — not so fast there. Unfortunately, although we wish Google were serious about it, it was just a marketing antic. We are probably light years away from someone possibly ever coming up with a machine that can bend time through space and make time travelling possible.  Maybe they will travel back to 2015 and ferry us to the oblivion of futures…or, maybe not.

Google was only lost in the excitement of the moment- The Future Day. Just like other companies that capitalized on the moment to market themselves, Google came up with a rather remarkable idea of brewing an online storm from a simple “project leakage”. While Nike announced its Michael J. Fox collaboration plans to come up with state of the art limited edition Nike Mags, and Lyft offered free New York DeLorean rides, Google took to twitter to “leak” their plans.

To make it believable, they embedded a link in a tweet that was to introduce Gmail users to a host of new email account themes. However, instead of being directed to a theme page, the link redirected social media users to a “confidential” PDF file called “Project Flux”

Project Flux- get it? If you remember the movie Back to the Future 2 correctly, Marty McFly, the character played by Michael J Fox, travelled through time in a DeLorean DMC-12 from 1985 to 2015 with the help of a “Flux capacitor”.

The PDF file got many people fooled, with some even going ahead to download the entire document and taking screenshots of Google’s ultimate “secret”. It contained drawings and pictures of the said “time travelling” car, whose prototype looked like a spawn between the company’s self-driving car and the DeLorean. Additionally, there were several details which were in line with the film’s storyline. The car, for instance, had been scheduled for production in Ireland, from the 21st of October. After that, it was expected to undergo “88 public tests” before June 2016. But that was just another trick by Google, coming from the fact that in the movie, the DeLorean had to move at a speed of 88 miles hour to effectively jump through time.

That was indeed a remarkably good gag by Google- although we all hope that some executive, in the near future, walks to the boss’ office and pitches an idea to build a time travelling machine. It may seem like a crazy idea, but Google clearly has “crazier” genius minds.

 

Innovative Clean Technology for 2016

Businesses and everyday people are becoming increasingly more tuned into using things that are efficient and environmentally friendly. Clean tech innovations aren’t limited, and can have a positive impact on everyone. Some innovations are already finding a place in the homes of environmentally-conscious individuals, while others are working to make institutional changes in the power industry. In sum, there are many remarkable innovations coming up the pipeline that are worth noting.

SolarCity’s Solar PV Panel

This panel, which was introduced on the heels of Tesla’s electric SUV named Model X, boasts an efficiency rate higher than 22%. This clean tech innovation is important, as it’s directly related to lowering the cost of using solar-based products.

GreenEgg Smart Home Hub

Shown off at Cleantech Innovate, an opportunity for companies to connect with investors, the GreenEgg Smart Home Hub puts energy consumption front and center in the family home. For most families, TVs are essential and it’s common to gather around them. For that reason, it makes sense to display energy consumption on there, making it just as easy to catch a show as it is to catch patterns in energy consumption. The device is user friendly and communicates high energy use with the color red.

2015 Paris Climate Conference (COP21)

In anticipation of the Paris Climate Conference in December, the Global Sustainable Electricity Partnership (GSEP) released a report that was signed by 11 of the top electricity company executives across the globe. Recommendations include concentrated solar power (both on its own to lower the attachment to water for air-cooling systems and to make conventional plants more efficient via combined gas cycling); biomass (for power plants that run on this, the key to better electricity output could be found in organic liquids that vaporize at 70 degrees Celsius); and both onshore and offshore wind (they would expand the types of places that could be used to generate energy).

Utilities: What’s Up For the Future

In a Huffington Post article, Clint Wilder talked about the transformation that needs to happen with electric utility model—something that is “less sexy,” but certainly just as important. Companies like Google are leading the way. Currently, they’re at 35% of their 100% goal of using renewable energy to power their worldwide network. Though it’s a long process, by demanding change from the utility companies and regulators they’ve been able to make strides, like powering their facilities using a wind farm and a new one that will use renewable resources.

Wilder notes that New York, California, and Hawaii are ahead of the curve, and applauds New York’s Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) initiative. “New York seeks to fundamentally change the way its power market values assets. Utilities (and all other market players), after decades of focusing almost solely on centralized generation assets as value creators, need to see the demand side—microgrids and load reduction, plus DG—as even more valuable.”

Without a doubt, the work to amend how utilities and regulatory agencies work requires just as much innovation on the people side as the scientific side.