30 June 2010

Tesla takes off, other EV news, dueling subsidies and more green information for business

Top Stories

Tesla’s IPO: After-hours trading, big winners, and what it means for green.reliability medium.
"Tesla Motors' IPO trumped even the most bullish of expectations today, selling 13.3 million shares for $226.1 million and earning a valuation above $2.2 billion. Initially priced at $17 last night, the company’s shares started trading this morning at $19, and hit $23.89 by the time the market closed — an impressive 40.5 percent increase. It’s since increased to $24 during after-hours trading. ... The question cleantech observers are asking now is whether Tesla’s success will make the public markets friendlier to green companies in general. But most industry analysts say no." Analysts cite fascination with cars, linkups with Toyota and Daimler as factors that boosted Tesla. See GreenBeat. [Testosterone appeal sells. Analysts pooh-pooh Tesla's triumph, saying such enthusiasm probably won't carry over to other cleantech sectors. but there may be underlying enthusiasm for EVs.]

Tesla IPO: What’s an Electric Car Maker Worth?reliability medium.
"Tesla's high valuation ratio relative to other auto companies reflects an expectation that electric vehicles are a growth industry, says Lux Research analyst Jacob Grose. 'It is an indication that the investment community is betting that Tesla will grow much faster (and its electric vehicles will sell much faster) than the average auto company (standard gas-powered car) will over the next few years,' he told us in an email today." "How much is a pure-play electric car maker worth? Some of the world’s largest automakers have invested significant sums into plug-in vehicle development efforts in recent years, but Tesla Motors’ IPO this week gives us the first real glimpse of how the market values an electric vehicle business. Here’s how Tesla — an early mover in a growing field that includes Fisker Automotive, Coda Automotive, Think and others — compares to some of the heavyweights that are revving their engines for the electric vehicle market." Other analyst's comments. Story at earth2tech.

Companies, Industries, Markets and Supply Chains

Cisco Launches Smart Grid Assault, Home Energy Gadget.reliability medium.
"On Tuesday morning Cisco launched its all-out smart grid assault, including a home energy management product, a hosted residential demand response type service and upgrades to its building automation programs. ... Cisco will sell a 'Home Energy Controller,' which is a touchscreen energy dashboard that it will offer to utilities for their residential customers ... The device has both Zigbee and Wi-Fi wireless communications enabled, and can connect with smart thermostats, smart appliances, and the utility back office." Other new products, details. See earth2tech.

Mitsubishi, Peugeot in electric commercial vehicle tie-up.reliability high.
"Mitsubishi Motors Corp and PSA Peugeot Citroen said on Wednesday they have agreed to work together to develop electric vehicle powertrains, initially focusing on light commercial vehicles. ... Mitsubishi Motors said the deal was aimed at developing a commercial vehicle to be sold by PSA." See Reuters.

Fireman's Fund Offers Insurance Discount to Energy Star Buildings.reliability high.
"Fireman's Fund Insurance Company is offering a 5 percent discount to policyholders with Energy Star buildings in the latest expansion of the firm's green insurance coverage. ... The new offerings include Green Financial Incentive Coverage for policyholders who paid for green improvements to their property with help from a tax incentive, financial grant or a similar benefit -- but then suffered a loss to that upgrade and are obligated to refund the incentive they received." From Greener World Media.

Retailers urge government to lead waste crackdown.reliability high.
"The Designing Out Waste Consortium, which has been organised by environmental think-tank the Green Alliance and includes Asda, Boots, Sainsbury's and Unilever, as well as Royal Mail, Valpak and Veolia, has released a new report containing a series of recommendations designed to reduce levels of waste. In particular, it calls on the government to develop a standardised mechanism for measuring a product's environmental impact and impose tough new life cycle-based sustainability performance standards for products, potentially through an expansion of the EU's Ecodesign Directive." See BusinessGreen. Access report here. [Businesses hope government will provide coordination so they don't each have to undertake supply chain waste reduction initiatives separately. On the other hand, any business which moves on its own might gain competitive advantage (e.g. WalMart).]

Government and Regulation

EU moves towards common electric car standards.reliability high.
"The European Commission and standardization groups -- the European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization and the European Telecommunications Standards Institute -- signed a deal on defining how the plug and socket system should look and work. ... Under the agreement, the groups will develop the charging standard for the 27-nation bloc by mid-2011 while ensuring it is safe, interoperable with all types of electric vehicles and energy-efficient." Story at Reuters.

Fossil Fuel Subsidies Dwarf Global Clean Energy Assistance: New Analysis.reliability medium.
"countries have their work cut out on shifting from fossil-fuel subsidies to supporting clean energy.  Bloomberg New Energy Finance has developed this very helpful figure which shows that global subsidies for fossil fuels dwarf those provided for clean energy. ... Even when looking at clean energy subsidies in 2009 ..., clean energy subsidies barely even show up on the graph." Includes graph from Bloomberg report. More at NRDC blogs. PDF of IEA slideshow here. [The graph in the article is worth a look.]

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