Solar Power Advances in Haiti
NRG Energy, Inc. has announced the completion of its “The Sun Lights the Way” project in Haiti. The program entailed the installation of solar electric systems at 20 schools, a fish farm and a drip irrigation system supporting agricultural production throughout Haiti’s Central Plateau region, through collaboration with a non-profit organization called Solar Electric Light Fund (SELF). This project helps to improve the quality of education for more than 6,000 Haitian students by providing the electricity needed to power lights, communication systems, laptop computers and other school equipment in remote areas of the country. The project received support from Trina Solar, a leading integrated manufacturer of solar photo-voltaic (PV) products, which donated all of the solar panels installed on the schools.
Digital Lumens to Offer Business Customers an Option to Have LED’s
If your business does not have the spare capital to invest in LED lighting, Digital Lumens can help you move towards the green light. Early next year, Digital Lumens plans to launch its ‘lighting as a service’ initiative wherein business customers outsource their lighting to Digital Lumens, with the focus of the deal on the cost of energy, rather than the cost of the equipment. The customer enters into a shared-savings agreement with the company, where Digital Lumens installs, operates and maintains the equipments and continually optimizes software so that the system achieves greater energy savings. Digital Lumens and the customer then share the money saved. LED is beyond a doubt a hot market with forecasts of 40 percent growth through 2016. So expect to see more players like Digital Lumens capturing market share by offering new ways to make LED’s affordable.
$1 Billion Ohio Natural Gas Power Plant to Open in May
The first of several large natural gas processing plants in Eastern Ohio is on schedule to open in May. The $1 billion plant is being built in Kensington, Ohio, a small town in eastern Columbiana County. Experts say that without the plant and others like it, Ohio’s shale gas would continue to be stuck in the exploration stage. M3 Midstream LLC, a Houston-based company, is building the plant under a partnership with Chesapeake Energy Corp. of Oklahoma and EV Energy Partners. The facility will be connected through a 24-inch high-pressure pipeline to a sister plant about 40 miles south in Leesville in Harrison County. The two plants will be able to process 800 million cubic feet of natural gas a day and will employ about 60 people.
Australia Eyeing to Make its First Green Fund Investment by July 2013
Oliver Yates, the new head of Australia’s Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) expects the fund to make its first investment in July 2013. While CEFC is still at its early stages, Yates is planning to tap overseas expertise to strengthen his investment team. The CEFC will aim for a rate of return comparable to the government’s bond rate and finance will go to projects at later stages of development. The fund hopes that this strategy will coax cautious investors out of the woodwork, where they have been hiding from a volatile policy outlook and unstable capital markets.
European Energy Companies Shows Interest in US Offshore Wind
European energy companies are considering participating in U.S. offshore wind-farm auctions, a sign of increasing confidence in the viability of wind power off U.S. shores. Developers including Spain’s Iberdrola SA, Electricite de France SA and Ireland’s Mainstream Renewable Power Ltd., have filed indications of interest for the first competitive lease auction for U.S. offshore wind farms, scheduled for next year. U.S. companies have been planning offshore turbines for more than a decade and none have been built. Having large European wind veterans evaluate the lease auctions shows that the market is indeed real.