NewEnergyNews: QUICK NEWS, February 17: THE MONEY IN SOLAR; WIND’S LAKE MICHIGAN PROBLEM; SOLAR’S FLORIDA PROBLEM

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    Founding Editor Herman K. Trabish

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  • The Age Of New Energy Storage Is At Hand

    Tuesday, February 17, 2015

    QUICK NEWS, February 17: THE MONEY IN SOLAR; WIND’S LAKE MICHIGAN PROBLEM; SOLAR’S FLORIDA PROBLEM

    THE MONEY IN SOLAR Solar Funding and M&A; 2014 Fourth Quarter and Annual Report

    February 2015 (Mercom Capital Group)

    “…Total corporate funding including VC, public market and debt financings totaled $26.5 billion in 2014, a 175 percent increase year-over-year…Global venture capital funding in the solar sector saw a sharp increase over the previous year with more than $1.3 billion raised in 85 deals. In comparison, in 2013, $612 million was raised in 98 deals…It was a record year for public market financings, which accounted for about $5.2 billion in 52 deals in 2014, nearly doubling from 2013, which had $2.8 billion in 39 deals…There were seven announced IPOs in 2014. The largest was Abengoa Yield’s raise of $828.7 million on the NASDAQ. Yieldco’s raised about $1.5 billion of the $2.1 billion raised via IPOs…Announced debt financing increased threefold in 2014 with $20 billion in 58 deals compared to 2013 with $6.2 billion in 38 deals. China continued to dominate debt financing activity with $15.8 billion in 21 deals…Solar M&A activity in 2014 was the most active of the last four years in terms of transactions, with 116 transactions compared to 81 transactions in 2013…”

    click here for more

    WIND’S LAKE MICHIGAN PROBLEM Whatever happened to offshore wind energy? Five years since Lake Michigan wind turbines proposed

    Stephen Kloosterman, Februaqry 11, 2015 (MLive)

    “…Five years ago, Scandia Wind created quite a stir by proposing a large wind-energy project…[for Lake Michigan off the West Michigan coast but] the discussion of putting wind turbines in Lake Michigan has been relatively silent since…State officials conducted a two-year study of the issue but their recommendations don't include areas in or near West Michigan…[A] top executive at Consumers Energy said there's not much of a market for the offshore wind energy…However, the idea of offshore wind refuses to die…In 2009, wind energy was…part of Gov. Jennifer Granholm's administration plan to help the state's economy rebound from the recession…Scandia Wind LLC got the public's attention late that year proposing 100 to 200 utility-sized wind turbines in Lake Michigan…Scandia had hoped to get the Mason County and Oceana County boards of commissioners to support the proposed development, but that sort of formal support never materialized…Another blow to offshore wind energy on the Great Lakes came last year when the U.S. Department of Energy bypassed a grant application for a Lake Erie pilot project in favor of projects on the East and West coasts...And the market seems headed in the direction of on-shore wind energy…” click here for more

    SOLAR’S FLORIDA PROBLEM Cloudy Prospects for Rooftop Solar’s Growth in Florida: Energy

    Mark Chediak, February 16, 2015 (Bloomberg News)

    “…Florida ranks near the top for the amount of solar potential, yet comes in 15th for home solar systems. Texas, which rivals California for most sun resources, comes in 11th in installed residential panels…What makes them different from California, the top market for solar power, is cheaper utility rates and the lack of policies to encourage rooftop panels…The average cost of a home solar system has dropped about 70 percent since 1988, and they are now cost competitive with grid-supplied power in 42 U.S. cities including Dallas and Miami…Many utilities, meanwhile, have been cautious about encouraging residential solar because they lose revenue when customers start producing their own power…Under Florida law, only utilities can sell power to retail customers…[That shuts out] solar leasing, the no-money-down model that’s made residential the fastest-growing part of the U.S. solar market…Solar advocates point to the state’s lack of a renewable power standard as another impediment...Texas has such a mandate…[but] is one of seven states that doesn’t require utilities to [net meter and] buy power from consumers’ home-solar systems…[making] home solar is far less economical…” click here for more

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