21 May 2010

Spillcam (fail), greener grass, strong cleantech investing, India can lead? and other company, government and supply chain green news

Top Stories

Toyota Buying Tesla Stake for Electric Car Tie-Up.reliability high.
"Toyota Motor Corp., the world’s largest automaker, is buying a $50 million stake in the Californian electric-car maker Tesla Motors Inc. as automakers compete to offer low-polluting models in the U.S. Tesla will also buy a closed Toyota joint-venture factory in California to build its Model S and other vehicles, Tesla Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk said yesterday. The companies said they’ll cooperate in developing electric cars, parts, production systems and engineering support." See Bloomberg Businessweek. [Toyota may get some good press for preserving some jobs at its former NUMMI plant in Fremont, California. It also gets to build experience in manufacturing EVs. Tesla gets a factory and workforce. (It had been within days of signing a deal to build a factory in Downey, California.)]

Cleantech Is Where Most of The VC Dollars Are Heading These Days.reliability medium.
"PeHUB, today released a Top 10 ranking of this year’s largest venture capital deals, so far. And, not surprisingly, half of the 10 deals listed involved cleantech companies." See Green Energy Reporter. Access top 10 list here.

Live (?) Video of the Oil Spill.reliability high.
Democrat Edward J. Markey of Massachusetts, chair of the House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming, demanded BP make available its video feed of the Deepwater Horizon oil gusher, and BP complied. The Congressman put the feed on his committee's website. Traffic promptly crashed the site and its staff is scrambling to add capacity. "'We’re working around the clock as we speak to fix this,' said Eben Burnham-Snyder, a spokesman for Mr. Markey. 'The enormous demand for this video means that it’s now taxing the servers.'" From New York Times Green blog. [Grandstanding congressmen should build the grandstand first before they start bragging. Check out the "live video feed" here. Smiling face of the Congressman comes through fine, at least.]

Companies, Industries, Markets and Supply Chains

This stinks: What perfume makers won’t tell you.reliability medium.
Discusses recent report that fragrance products contain many secret ingredients, some of which have not been tested for health effects and some of which are known to be bad for people. "Keep in mind that advocacy groups, like the industries they target, have an agenda, which is about getting attention and raising money. ... Having said that, why anyone would choose to smear these chemicals on their face or body is a mystery to me." More about health issues and fragrance industry. From Marc Gunther blog. Access report here.

Global Clean Energy Investment Hits $27.3 Billion in First Quarter of 2010.reliability high.
"Despite the recession, several recent reports indicate that the clean energy sector continues to remain strong globally, despite the economic turbulence. An April 12 report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance noted that worldwide financial investment in clean energy reached $27.3 billion in the first quarter of 2010, up 31% from the first quarter of 2009, but down 13.6% from the fourth quarter. The financial analyst's quarterly figures cover asset financing of wind farms, solar parks, biofuel plants, and other projects, as well as public market, venture capital, and private equity financing for clean energy companies." More highlights and links. See DOE EERE News page.

BrightSource Energy Raises Record-Setting Capital: $150 Million.reliability high.
"French energy company, Alstom said on Thursday that it will enter a partnership with BrightSource Energy Inc. in order to enter the solar energy market. Alstom announced it is investing up to US $55 million in BrightSource Energy Inc., with an equity stake that positions Alstom as one of the main shareholders in the company. This operation takes place as part of a capital increase of $150 million organized by BrightSource. The California State Teachers’ Retirement System was also an investor. The company has now raised more than $300 million." See Renewable Energy World. [Alstom, very big in fossil-thermal power generation and hydroelectricity, and a participant in nuclear and wind energy, enters solar thermal sector.]

India can lead world in green technology, says US professor.reliability high.
"Advocating the Green Leap Strategy — converging clean technology with people at the base of the income pyramid — Hart said a green economy would happen in developing countries like India, China and Africa, not in the US." Remarks of Professor Stuart Hart of Samuel C Johnson Chair in Sustainable Global Enterprise, Professor of Management, Cornell University. From Hindustan Times. [But how?]

Gamesa signs 10-year deal to supply turbines to Cannon’s Mexican wind farms.reliability high.
"Wind turbine manufacturer Gamesa has agreed a 10-year exclusivity agreement for it to supply project developer Cannon Power’s sites in the Mexican state of Baja California. ... Cannon Power Group’s development pipeline in Mexico’s Baja California currently totals 1,000MW at various stages of development, Gamesa said." From NewNet. [Spanish turbines in Mexico to provide electricity for Southern California. That's globalization.]

Government and Regulation

Boulder requires medical pot growers to go green.reliability high.
Boulder has approved regulations for the medical marijuana industry with a twist in keeping with the sensibility of this liberal-leaning, Colorado university town. The regulations unanimously passed Tuesday will require growing operations to offset 100 percent of their electricity use with wind or solar power. See Salon from AP. [The grass is always greener in Boulder.]

Singapore Boosts Transition To A Low Carbon Economy.reliability high.
"The Singapore Environment Council (SEC) and the Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology (SIMTech), a research institute of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) today inked an agreement to launch Singapore’s and South East Asia’s first carbon label. This Carbon Label is a Singapore initiative to support the country’s transition to a recognised low carbon economy by measuring and communicating the carbon content of the products and services we consume and produce, raising the carbon consciousness of governments, businesses and consumers. The carbon label in quantifying and declaring the carbon content is an advancement of the Singapore Green Label." From GovMonitor. [Singapore is about 20th in per-capita carbon dioxide emissions, higher than any European country except Luxembourg and any Asian country except Brunei. Ten times higher per capita than India. It will need more than a label to be green.]


[Crossposted from HaraBara.com courtesy of HaraBara, Inc. Copyright © 2010 HaraBara, Inc.]