Pennsylvania’s AEPS goals need to be stretched to attract more investors

Pennsylvania’s Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard (RPS) has not been up to the expected standard. Energy experts and government critics have pointed out that the state needs to expand its targets to keep up with neighboring states in the clean energy sector. At the beginning of February, Greg Vitali, a Pennsylvania state representative, published an article titled ‘a realistic climate agenda for Pennsylvania’. He highlighted what ought to be done to boost the state’s green energy industry.

Pennsylvania is the fifth-largest emitter of greenhouse gases in the United States, according to a recent study. “Pennsylvania emitted about 215 million metric tons of carbon dioxide in 2017, making it the fifth-largest emitting state in the nation,” said Vitali in the article.

According to Vitali, political disagreements will drag the state’s approach to climate change down. “Pennsylvania should be doing things like increasing its Alternative Energy Portfolio Standard (AEPS), expanding the energy conservation provisions of Act 2019, and joining the Transportation and Climate Initiative Program. But with the State House and Senate firmly in Republican control, it’s unlikely that any of these things will happen this year,” added Vitali.

His sentiments are valid and realistic. However, they are also below average compared to Pennsylvania’s neighbors, who have robust and well-planned green energy projects.

“Pennsylvania’s current AEPS goals require a paltry 8% of electricity come from renewable sources, with 0.5% from in-state solar by May 2021. These numbers are meager compared to Pennsylvania’s neighboring states,” said Andrea Wittchen, an energy expert. Increasing these targets will attract more investors in the region. According to Wittchen, increasing the renewable energy goals to 18% with solar accounting for 5.5 % would increase the state’s investment values to billions of dollars and provide job opportunities to residents.

On the contrary, if something is not done to ramp up these values, investors will avoid investing in Pennsylvania, leaving the state’s economy stagnant. Investors will camp in the neighboring states making Pennsylvania lag behind in growth, market viability, and low clean energy industry.

Pennsylvania’s AEPS was enacted in 2004 to introduce alternative energy solutions to the state’s electricity demands. Electricity distribution companies and suppliers were mandated to ensure that by 2021, eighteen percent of the state’s electricity is sourced from renewables. To address climate change and contribute to the nation’s zero-carbon targets, Pennsylvania needs to adopt new policies on the expansion of battery-powered vehicles, endorse the use and production of large-scale methane and authorize the adoption of community-based solar power projects.


Impressive data of SAIC’s electric car sales going for $4500 in China

There is an electric car available in the SAIC-GM-Wuling Automobile dealer showroom in Chongqing. It is none other than the Wuling Hong Guang Mini EV, which entered the electric vehicle market last year in July. Ever since then, many Chinese have decided to test its experience by buying it. It is a car that accommodates up to four people. It is box-shaped, measuring less than 3 meters and 1.5 meters for length and width, respectively.

With as low as 28,000 yuan, equivalent to $4460, you can take an electric vehicle home. However, one model stands out given that it also has air conditioning that goes for $5,000. According to a salesman, there is also an option of making a down payment of 13,000 yuan then pay the rest later without incurring any extra cost in the form of interest.

If one compares it with Tesla in terms of performance and range, it will emerge the loser. Despite that, it is one of the best-selling electric vehicles in China. It is also doing very well among the combination of all clean energy cars hybrids included. That’s the case since it comes at a pocket-friendly price, not forgetting its users’ convenience. Its success is also something that SAIC Motor, a renowned automaker in China, has a reason to celebrate, no doubt. After all, it is the majority shareholder of SAIC-GM-Wuling responsible for the Wuling EV’s production and sales. It is also important to note that General Motors is also part of this venture.

The majority of the average consumers can comfortably rely on it entirely for their daily driving needs. Upon charging it fully, its driving range is 120 km, and the speed can go as high as 100 kph. That corresponds with what markets often call the commuting tool of the people. If a need arises, it is possible to charge it using a standard public charging station hence convenient to own and will avoid getting stranded in case the charge dries. The manufacturer didn’t settle for the cutting-edge battery, thus available at a low price.

From July to the end of 2020, the car had registered annual sales of 112,000 units making it only second to Tesla’s Model 3. However, going by monthly sales, it took the lead, and even Tesla’s EV followed. As far as the best-selling electric vehicle models are concerned, it is also number two after Tesla Model 2 globally.  LMC Automotive research firm analyst Alan Kang says it owes high sales to its design and low cost. He also added that relatively high sales were recorded in provinces such as Shandong and Henan.


Grids being served by renewable energy are reliable even in extreme weather conditions

Millions of Americans have been living without power for quite some time through the past week. This situation is attributable to the extreme winter season that escalated the dependence on electricity for warmth and other heat-generation operations. Nonetheless, the high demand for electricity is not the only problem leading to the shortage. Other factors include insufficient development of electricity utilities and restrictive regulations regarding the safety of forests from wildfires. Moreover, some grids need winterization to minimize future risks. This year witnessed millions of people spend the best part of winter in cold environments without power, making some freeze to death.

Meanwhile, politicians began pointing fingers at where fault should lie. Some decided to blame renewable energy for the sole creator of the outages. This move, of course, is simply not right. The technical failure was across the board for all energy generation in the state’s isolated power supply, and an investigation will look into how state policy played a role.

On the other hand, politicians started playing the blame game, with some pointing at renewable energy as the primary problem of a power outage. Experts have come up with an informed plan that will resolve such contentions about electricity supply in the future. A renewable energy research scientist from the University of Albany, Richard Perez, participated in the formulation of this plan. He explained that the electric grid could operate solely on renewable energy by engineering it to survive peak demand, harsh weather conditions, among other physical factors. Perez emphasized that the solar or wind energy structure must have high resilience to ensure continuous service provision even in extreme conditions.

The other challenge that people have managed to design the solution is the snowing on photovoltaic fields. The experts think that the ideal solution for this problem is winterizing the resources that can be coated with snow. This strategy has played out effectively in Canada, and the experts are hoping that it can shine in the US since Canada experiences way colder weather than the US. The next strategy is developing solar panels or wind turbines that can get the best results from any kind of weather. This move will help the country avoid the trouble of spending on the storage technology for this energy when they can tap it regularly and intensively. He outlined that a fusion of solar and wind energy collection technology can work out this magic and save the Americans the hustle of spending winter in blackouts.


Upstream SaaS ERP of W Energy Applications Selected for Management of Renewable Energy Royalties as well as Multimillion Acre Portfolio

W Energy SaaS ERP is the leading cloud-based energy logistics as well as transaction management software solution. In their recent announcements, it looks like the software just received another amazing deal. It will be in charge of the land and accounts of a different mix of royalty streams which spans renewable energy from its looks. In 2021, February 10th, the new boss in upstream and midstream oil and gas SaaS ERP solutions of W Energy Software went into the public about an exciting announcement. From the new leader’s statement, it is clear that W Energy has hit a new and awarding deal.

The statement highlighted that a broad royalty owner has confirmed up software licenses with the company. This fact means that the software solutions company will deal with its financial accounts and the land’s general management. What is exciting about this news piece is that W Energy won the bid after multiple lands and accounting software providers underwent a head-to-head evaluation to determine their legitimacy. W Energy is in charge of managing its multi-million-acre lease holdings and the revenue from these leases. The finances run from the surface to the mineral royalty streams.

Analysts explain that the top reason why W Energy Software was given a shot was its ability to manage the land and finances in a unique and exemplary way. It works with an integrated ERP solution that manages the accounts and the land simultaneously. Another reason why the deal went to W energy is its scalability features that meet the enterprise-level complexity. In addition to that, W Energy Software SaaS has a grand portfolio of the company’s cases for different clients. All these features go beyond what any legacy software vendor can offer, especially when dealing with a huge contract.

The client behind this W Energy Software contract has extensive lease holdings that revolve around millions of minerals and many surface areas in various states. This new client hopes that the W Energy enterprise-level ERP technology can work on their lands’ accounting and management. The management plan also involves different operations, including exploration, renewable power development, mining, and oil & gas exploration. With this software, the company can save on time and cost of integrating different systems to manage their management.

Following all the client’s requirements, the recruitment team settled for W Energy after the company exceeded its expectations. It is outstanding in financial accounting, land management, and fixed asset accounting. In their statement, Pete Waldroop, CEO of W Energy, thanked their clients for joining their team. In addition to that, Pete spoke about its dream to strive for excellence in its performance.


The rise in renewable energy increases investors’ returns

Among the beneficiaries of the White House Administration include SunPower, Enphase, and FirstSolar. These companies have substantial renewable energy stocks and are working towards the nation’s agenda of boosting green power and curbing climate change. Last year, the stock of these companies increased, improving the market’s gain.

President Joe Biden’s first day in office re-entered the United States to the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement, stopped gas and oil leasing in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and canceled a permit for the Keystone XL oil pipeline. A global market strategist at J.P. Morgan Asset Management, David Lebovitz, said that the last year’s move was droved by the fact that there would be more policy to support these initiatives moving forward. All these things are done to help fight against climate change. America wants to go back to its previous position of being a global leader in tackling the climate crisis.

Renewable energy sources like solar and wind contribute to 12% of the total energy production. This is an increase from 4% in 2011. Power from hydroelectric sources was at 8%, while energy generated from coal decreased to 24% from 44%. Last year, Fremont, California’s Enphase renewable power cascaded by over six times. Biden’s administration plans to spend $2 billion to enable a pollution-free energy sector by 2035. This is expected to significantly benefit the companies that engage in the generation of wind and solar energy. Biden also has other initiatives such as investments in negative emissions technologies and battery storage.

Last year December, industry optimism was strengthened when the government approved a fiscal stimulus package to extend wind and solar generation tax credit and other incentives. The lithium mine’s approval in Nevada by the government is expected to increase access to rechargeable batteries’ key components for electric vehicle technology. The head of the sustainable and impact investing at UBS Global Wealth Management, Andrew Lee, said that thinking of long-term anticipations in renewables is a significant thing for future generations.

The US predicts more revenue returns as the demand for renewable energy increases. Also, more solar and wind projects are expected to build. In 2021, plant owners and developers target to have an additional 15.4GW of capacity to the grid.  According to the US Energy Information Administration, this will be an increase from 12GW in 2020. The agency said that they expect the largest portion of this renewable energy in 2021 would come from solar, saying that this would be the first time solar energy would exceed wind power.


The electric vehicle highs expected to proceed to overdrive

Tesla‘s chief executive, Elon Musk, is now the richest person, with the company boasting of more than 700% in sales. China’s Nio is the other company in the electric vehicle industry that has clocked 1300% sales demonstrating that China is the best market for these cars. Other electric vehicle stocks are also rising in value, with this trend expected to progress throughout the year after most countries showing high interest in transitioning their transportation sector to clean energy. Nio is very expectant of becoming the new Teslas in addition to other companies like Fisker. Another company on the watch-list in the electric vehicle industry Canada’s Facedrive, which procured Steer, a subscription service in Washington DC that will provide the renting option for cars instead of purchasing them.

Additionally, Biden’s election in the United States elections will bring the country into this quest after the previous president advocating for the opposite. Tesla will have the opportunity to develop and expand its technology, which it could not do under Trump’s administration for fear of ruffling feathers with the government and losing out on the United States market. One brand that the company is closely watching is the Fisker SUV. The model boasts of recyclable parts and is yearning for the attention that the other Tesla brands attained while entering the market. Fisker will be lucky to develop and release the Ocean SUV in 2023 after taking the advance orders this year and next year for the development of the most competitive units.

Another interesting experience for the electric vehicle industry is that the Biden administration will be pouring $2 trillion into the renewable energy utilities. This move will make the development of electric vehicle charging infrastructure swift, suppressing the grunts by the citizens over mileage range problems. Tesla, which boasts of a $660 billion net worth, will be the biggest beneficiary in such a move because the other competitors like General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler are still far from this value. The company’s stocks clocked an increase of more than 14000%. Nio appears to be rising with its shares growing from $3.24 last year to $61 this month in the China market. Moreover, the company unveiled a model that has the latest technology, which even Tesla fans would opt to try.

Li Auto of China finalizes today’s discussion, which can never end because the technology in this industry and the changes happen in short periods. Li Xiang founded this company five years ago, dedicating it to develop local plug-in hybrid vehicles. After merging with a SPAC and its subsequent listing on the Nasdaq stock exchange market, the company is already in its highs. The company has clocked over $30 billion as its worth and is expected to develop over 120 million electric vehicles in this decade. This move is possible since the ban on ICE cars is fast approaching, and Li Auto will be among the benefactors in this trend.


MHI, Shell, and Vattenfall to develop a green energy hydrogen plant

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI), Shell, Vattenfall, and Warme Hamburg have penned an agreement that will inform the development of a green hydrogen energy plant in Germany. Initially, the companies intended to develop a 100MW electrolyzer at the Hamburg-Moorburg power plant before further analysis and decision to expand it into a green hydrogen energy facility. These partners have vowed to venture the potential of this facility expanding to generate more renewable energy. However, these activities will be waiting for authentication by the authorities before initiating green hydrogen generation through the next four years. These companies are hopeful that the Common European Interest program can financially support them through the EU Important Projects provision.

Additionally, this process will be useful in the first phase of this year when the partners design the project’s outline. The four companies explained that the site is perfect for this project because it has access to both the national 380,000-volt transmission network and the 110,000-volt network of the City of Hamburg. Moreover, ships can communicate with the operators at bay to develop a terminal in this area, creating a new venture that the companies can invest their profits. The companies can also provide a hydrogen network to supplement the government provisions and develop infrastructure to ensure they venture the remote areas with this technology promoting the transition to clean energy. A spokesperson for this project pointed that the neighborhood is a group of potential customers yearning for power that can meet their needs whenever they want.

Initially, Vattenfall had purchased this site from Hamburgische Electricitats-Werke, which had developed a gas-fired power plant in the area. Vattenfall then converted the plant into a coal-fired power plant, which has been operational for the last six years. After securing a contract, Vattenfall halted these activities that would see it phase out the emissive electricity production processes. The company will provide further details on the next step forward for this plant in March. Nevertheless, Hamburg and Vattenfall are in the process of preparing the site for the implementation of the green hydrogen energy project. Vattenfall’s chief of strategic development, Andreas Regnell, stated that this site’s transition to a carbon-free hydrogen power plant would pedal the region towards decarbonization and promotion of clean energy strategies.

Regnell added that they want to provide renewable energy to their market while expanding their facilities to reach more customers. This move would help the company provide its support in the quest to achieve the climate change objectives. The CEO of Shell, Fabian Ziegler, stated that they want to be part and parcel of this transformative plan to explore the supply chain to reach hydrogen power. On the other hand, MHI’s chief of energy systems, Kentaro Hosomi, highlighted that they want to implement their expertise and technologies through such collaborative projects.


Renewable energy is the key driver towards Africa’s post-coronavirus economic recovery and boost

Last week, at the 2021 UK African Investment Summit, panellists said that one of the drivers towards African’s post-Covid-19 economic boom and growth recovery is renewable energy. The main theme of the panel was to keep a strong partnership between Africa and the United Kingdom. The panel discussed many things, such as developing sustainable and resilient infrastructure and British innovation and technology to advance Africa’s development. The panel members said that to achieve this investing in large-scale electrification projects is the way to go.

Louis Taylor, the UK Export Finance CEO, said that African countries are moving on well despite the coronavirus pandemic. He added that Africa is full of opportunities, and in its high times, the UK inventors grab them and are part of success of the African story. Taylor said that the UK needs to support African countries since much better compared to these nations. Furthermore, the UK government is still one of the biggest G7 investors in Africa. For example, a £ 1.7 billion guarantee has been offered by the UK Export Finance to support Cairo monorail’s development in Egypt.

International Energy Agency statistics said that more than $100 billion every year is needed to boost Africa’s universal energy access by 2030. 40% of these funds would be used to install wind, solar, and other low-carbon energy production projects. The African Development Bank is one of the leading organizations that have promoted the speed of the continent’s electrification in its fresh agreement on the Energy for Africa initiative. This initiative targets to increase energy access to all Africans.

Wale Shonibare, who works at the bank as the director in charge of Energy Financial Solutions, Policy, and Regulation, said that Africa would greatly benefit from vast expert knowledge of London City the innovative financial solution. Shonibare suggested that structured approaches such as sustainable infrastructure growth and execution of high-scale electrification initiatives will attract UK investors. For instance, the Bank’s Desert to Power Initiative has high chances of attracting UK businesses’ interest.

Nicholas Oliver, the United Kingdom-based NMS Infrastructure Ltd’s Business Development Director, implored investors to join and partner with governments and local companies. He added that this is the best time to make an investment in Africa, saying that there is a great opportunity to invest in climate change as it presents a $3 billion investment by the year 2030. Nicholas ended his statement by asking what an opportunity? Olusola Lawson, who works at the African Infrastructure Investment Managers as the Co-Managing Director, said that electrification is the key for Africa to attain energy transition. Therefore, there is a need to invest in large-scale power plants to get more energy.


Spain’s plan to switch to renewable energy seems to be overly ambitious

The proposed climate change bill will ensure that Spain suppresses carbon emissions to net-zero by the end of three decades. The bill narrates how the country will solve the global warming problem in thirty years. The approval of this bill by the Spanish Parliament will imply that close to three-quarters of the country’s energy comes from clean energy resources, including solar and wind energy plants.

Moreover, the ban on coal, oil and gasoline will be useful in the time that the country has set in the plan forcing the late adopters of new technology out of the market or adjusting to the new normal in a short time. The new climate change bill agrees with the Paris Climate Agreement, making some people term it the latter’s aggressive replica. Nevertheless, this bill’s implementation will minimize global warming and accelerate the economy’s resuscitation back to life from the devastating effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

The ambitious nature of the plans has forced Spain’s government to adjust strategies that force the electricity market to depend on renewable energies fully. Consumers have received a convenient grace period in which they must switch their electricity suppliers to those whose energy comes from renewable energy or eventually go off-grid if their suppliers are overwhelmed and yield to the pressure to switch their sources.

Companies offering green energy have received incentives allowing them to provide renewable energy at affordable prices, with the challenge being the competition among electricity suppliers for this market. Additionally, the sun-tax withdrawal in Spain has allowed homes and businesses to switch to solar photovoltaic panels as their supplier of electricity. Since the country experiences over 300 sunny days each year, it is the best spot for setting up solar energy production farms.

Initially, taxes expended on these resources and the bureaucratic regulations surrounding their installations impeded the exploitation of this energy to benefit the citizens. Consumers and electricity providers are currently cashing into these projects to save up money and upgrade their living standards. Moreover, the new regulations allow the owners or suppliers of solar energy to be paid for the excess energy they retrieve and feed into the national grid. Additionally, the government promised to install not less than 3000 MW of wins solar energy throughout this decade. The CEO of the European Climate Foundation, Laurence Tubiana, emphasized that the transition to clean energy is no joke if Spain has decided to go all out to realize it.


The rapid growth of India in clean energy

As of now, India is leading to global carbon emissions. India’s population is 1.4 billion people, with 65% of this population depending on coal for energy. The country is undergoing a green-energy revolution that exceeds targets, break records, and making clean power a reality to many. Since India heavily relies on the coal industry, few ever thought that the country would exceed two critical adherences to the Paris Agreement.

One of these commitments is that India pledges to increase its clean power generation to 40% by 2030. Today, 38% of total India’s production capacity comes from hydroelectric, renewable, and nuclear sources, allowing the country to be on track to surpass its goals. The second dedication is reducing carbon emissions by 33-35%by 2030. There is the likelihood that by 2030, India would be reducing carbon emissions by 45%, exceeding the Paris target.

India’s fossil-fuel energy production capacity is 230GW, and 205GW comes from coal. Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced plans to build a new renewable-energy plant in 2015 with a capacity of 175GW by 2022, though many received the announcement with skepticism. Today, the country has installed a renewable power capacity of 89GW and is planning to attain the 175GW target. In 2015, India was producing renewables with a capacity of 35GW.

During the 2019 United Nations Climate Action Summit, Modi announced a new plan to build renewable energy with a capacity of 450GW by 2030. The motivating factors are the devastating effects of climate change, the deadly pollution in Indian cities, and the high energy imports bill.  There is a great contrast between India and the United States as far as clean energy is concerned, as clean energy initiatives in India are highly politicized. President-Elect Joe Biden has an incredible $2 trillion plan to generate 100% energy from clean sources by 2050.

India has advanced green technology, with wind power, solar power, and energy storage been at the forefront. The progress of these technologies is exponential and has already entered the virtuous cycle. The panel cost was $1000 per watt when Bell Labs built the first solar photovoltaic panel in1954. Since then, the cost per watt has dropped down. For instance, in 2008, the cost per watt was $3.65, and in 2018, the amount had gone down to 40 cents. In 2018, India passed an essential chapter where the cost of solar power becomes cheaper than coal. Many companies are ready to produce renewable power. For example, Greenko will produce 900MW of clean energy from hydroelectric storage and solar panels. Another is ReNew that will supply 300MW of reliable power from battery storage and solar panels.