Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Allianz and Nordex cooperate to develop Wind Power in France

Allianz has acquired two more wind farms from Nordex France

Nordex AG is further improving its position as one of the leading project developers on the French market: Allianz Specialised Investments, part of the alternative asset investment activities of the Allianz Group, has purchased the wind farms “Barbes d´Or” (12.5 MW) and “Joyeuses” (10 MW), planned and erected by Nordex. The total projects are equipped with Nordex N90/2500 turbines with 100 metre hub heights and are located in central France near to Issoudun.

In April this year Allianz already acquired the 12.5 MW “Les Cent Jalois” wind farm (12.5 MW) in the region of Aisne in northern France. This marked the start of the collaboration between Allianz and Nordex France. “We are pleased about this partnership. Allianz has now decided three times in favour of our N90/2500 technology, which has proved such an all-round success”, said Carsten Pedersen, COO Sales and marketing at Nordex.

With 334 MW on grid, Nordex is one of the three largest project developers in France. Overall, today Nordex France has a portfolio of 1,000 MW in different stages of development.

David Jones, CEO of Allianz Specialised Investments, said: "We are pleased to have acquired these two wind farms from Nordex and thereby increase our activities in France. We now have four operational wind farms in this key wind energy market. These latest investments also take our operational asset base in Europe to over 300 MW.”

Indian Renewable IPP Greenko gets 46 M$ funding from GEF

Private equity firm Global Environment Fund (GEF) announces the completion of an investment of $46.3 million in Greenko PLC, which is based in Hyderabad, India. Greenko is one of India’s largest independent power producers focused exclusively on renewable energy generation through the development, acquisition, construction, and operation of run-of-river hydro and biomass-fired plants. GEF is the only non-public investor and holds two seats on the Board of Directors of the company’s Mauritian subsidiary.

Since its formation in 2006, Greenko has sought to be a premier clean energy player in India, with a diverse portfolio of scaled renewable energy assets. GEF’s investment will accelerate the company’s growth objectives as it addresses the massive shortfalls in power supply needs in India in the coming years.

Anil Chalamalasetty, Chief Executive of Greenko, said, “We are delighted to receive funding from Global Environment Fund which shows confidence in Greenko’s business model and its long-term ambition to be a leading clean energy player in the fast growing Indian economy and energy markets. We believe GEF’s experience in investing in clean energy projects in other emerging economies will be a good value addition to the platform.”

H. Jeffrey Leonard, President, Chief Executive Officer and Founding Partner of GEF, commented, “GEF is pleased to enter into a long-term partnership with Greenko, a leading and scaled renewable energy platform in India with a robust pipeline of expansion opportunities. Consistent with GEF’s investment strategy, Greenko represents a proven management team that should help meet India’s need for sustainable sources of power in the future.”

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Smart Grid: Honeywell awarded grant to implement transition to reliable energy grid

Honeywell Will Also Help Other Grant Recipients Implement Programs as the Country Transitions to a More Efficient, Reliable Energy Grid

Honeywell (NYSE: HON) today announced it has been awarded an $11.4-million grant from the Department of Energy (DOE) as part of the largest single energy grid modernization investment in U.S. history. The grant, one of several awarded from a smart grid funding package under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), solidifies Honeywell's position as a key player in helping the U.S. transition to a more efficient, reliable and secure electric system.

"Honeywell has long been supportive of investing in our country's energy independence and these grants are essential to that end," said Roger Fradin, president and chief executive officer of Honeywell Automation and Control Solutions. "However, the hard part comes next -- rebuilding the energy infrastructure. Honeywell has the project management experience to help utilities successfully deploy their programs and forge a tighter link with customers. And we have the technology to help homeowners and businesses take control of their energy use and maximize the benefits of a smart grid."

One of only four non-utility companies to receive funding, Honeywell will use the grant to support a critical peak pricing response program that will help commercial and industrial facilities in the Southern California Edison (SCE) service territory automatically implement energy management strategies to reduce costs and improve efficiency. The program will support nearly 700 customers as SCE and other California utilities move to critical peak pricing -- a program that offers rate discounts during the summer months to customers who can reduce or shift power during periods of peak electrical consumption.

The new rate structure will see prices spike during periods of peak demand, approximately 10 to 15 days per year. SCE will send a notice prior to any increase and Honeywell will install technology that allows customers to automate load-shedding strategies that reduce energy use during these periods. Based on open automated demand response (OpenADR) standards and powered by Tridium's Niagara(AX) Framework® and JACE® controller, the system will receive the utility's signal, communicate with the facility's building automation system and make changes based on parameters the customer sets. This could include turning off banks of lights, cycling equipment on and off, or temporarily increasing temperature set points in the facility.

In addition to installing the technology, Honeywell will provide customer outreach, education and engineering services, as well as ongoing support.

"Honeywell's program integrates business customers with a smarter grid," said Larry Oliva, director, Tariff Programs and Services, Southern California Edison. "Our customers will have the ability to decide how they want to respond to pricing changes, and the subsequent reduction in energy use will help us provide affordable, clean power over the long term."

Honeywell is also helping other organizations implement projects tied to the smart grid investment grants, including an advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) program for the city of Quincy, Fla. Honeywell will manage the installation of smart meters throughout the city and provide technology to automate commercial load-shedding strategies, similar to the SCE program.

Honeywell also won ARRA grants for the research and development of technology that ties into the smart grid. For example, the company is testing solutions that will significantly reduce down time and failures for the growing fleet of wind turbines in the United States. Researchers are also developing a controls infrastructure for optimizing renewable energy micro-grids.

The DOE funding, as well as Honeywell's involvement in other grants, reflects the company's expertise in smart grid services and technologies. Honeywell Utility Solutions, part of the Building Solutions business, has delivered demand response programs for almost 20 utilities in the United States and Canada. It specializes in all aspects of demand response from program design and load-control technology to customer recruitment and support.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Online Climate Event - WWF and The Economist

Thriving in The Clean Economy

WED NOV 18, 2009 1:30 pm EST | 10:30 am PST | 6:30 pm GMT

Register now at

Free Webcast features Coca-Cola, IBM, Nokia, and other Climate Savers partners sharing carbon-cutting innovations just weeks before Copenhagen

Discover how companies are finding innovative solutions to combat climate change and secure our energy future while increasing their bottom lines. WWF Climate Savers companies are leading by example, showing that economic growth, curbing carbon, and increasing shareholder value and can go hand in hand.

Learn what they’re doing – and how they’re doing it – as well as their policy positions just weeks before governments gather in Copenhagen to discuss a new global climate framework.

Register now at

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Industrial Energy Efficiency Projects Get Financing

Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced that the Department of Energy is awarding more than $155 million in funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for 41 industrial energy efficiency projects across the country. These awards include funding for industrial combined heat and power systems, district energy systems for industrial facilities, and grants to support technical and financial assistance to local industry. The industrial sector uses more than 30 percent of U.S. energy and is responsible for nearly 30 percent of U.S. carbon emissions.

“To remain globally competitive, American industry needs to be energy efficient. The funding for industrial energy efficiency technologies announced today will support a robust American industrial sector and help to usher in a clean energy economy,” said Secretary Chu. “Many companies already realize that improving efficiency saves money while helping the environment. These projects will make energy efficiency technologies more widely available, cutting energy use and reducing carbon pollution across the country.”

Nine projects announced today will promote the use of combined heat and power, district energy systems, waste energy recovery systems, and energy efficiency initiatives in hospitals, utilities, and industrial sites. Combined Heat and Power and District Energy Systems generate both the heat and power needed for industrial processes on-site, instead of using electricity from the grid, and can be nearly twice as efficient as conventional heat and power production. These 9 awards – totaling approximately $150 million – will be leveraged with $634 million in private industry cost share for a total project value of up to $785 million. These industrial efficiency projects will result in almost 14 trillion Btu in estimated energy savings, which is equivalent to over 112 million gallons of gasoline per year.

The remaining 32 awards will provide local technical support for the industrial sector through university-based Industrial Assessment Centers, state agencies, regional partnerships, and a national technical assistance provider. This funding will enable DOE’s Industrial Technologies Program to provide technical and financial support for local businesses and manufacturing facilities to save energy and reduce their energy costs, obtain financing to realize significant gains in efficiency and productivity, and save and create manufacturing and industrial sector jobs across the country.

These 32 projects are an extension of DOE’s successful Save Energy Now initiative, which provides plant energy assessments and technical assistance to energy intensive industrial facilities. Since the program’s inception in 2006, more than 2,300 assessments have been completed. Over 1,500 industrial facilities implemented the identified energy measures, which have saved $218 million, 35 trillion Btu and 2.3 million metric tons of carbon dioxide each year.

The projects announced today are selections for financial award. The final details for each project award are subject to final contract negotiations between DOE and the grantee.

Today’s awards include:

Industrial Technologies ($149.3 million total)
* Texas Medical Center Central Heating and Cooling Services Company
* Seattle Steam Company
* Rhode Island LFG Genco, LLC
* Air Products and Chemicals, Inc.
* Ridgewood Renewable Power, LLC
* ArcelorMittal USA
* Verso Paper Corporation
* The Dow Chemical Company
* Clean Tech Partners

Industrial Assessment Centers ($1.87 million total)
* Bradley University
* Georgia Institute of Technology
* Lehigh University
* Mississippi State University
* North Carolina State University
* Oklahoma State University
* San Diego State
* Tennessee Technological University
* Texas A&M University
* University of Alabama
* University of Dayton
* University of Delaware
* University of Louisiana at Lafayette
* University of Michigan
* West Virginia University

State Agencies ($3.84 million total, approximately $350,000 awarded to each state)
* Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs
* Idaho Office of Energy Resources
* Kentucky Department for Energy Development and Independence
* Louisiana State Energy
* Maryland Energy Administration
* Minnesota Department of Commerce
* Mississippi Development Authority-Energy Division
* New Jersey Industrial Energy Program
* Ohio Energy Office, Ohio Department of Development
* Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection
* Wisconsin’s Office of Energy Independence

Regional Partnerships ($2.5 million total, $500,000 awarded per region)
* Energy Resources Division of the Georgia Environmental Facilities Authority along with Georgia, Tennessee, and North Carolina
* Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources and the Center for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy at the University of Massachusetts (CEERE)
* Illinois State Energy Office
* Washington Department of Community Trade and Economic Development
* West Virginia Department of Energy

National Technical Assistance Provider ($1.4 million)
* Oak Ridge Partnership for Industrial Energy Efficiency

Smart Grid Software for Solar Projects by Gridpoint

GridPoint, Inc., an established leader in smart grid software, announced that it will provide storage management, renewable integration, and home energy management solutions for Sacramento Municipal Utility District’s (SMUD) smart grid solar project, the recipient of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funding. GridPoint worked with the utility to draft the proposal, which is part of $117.6 million allocated by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) in support of high penetration solar deployment projects.

SMUD’s project will evaluate how the integration of energy storage could enhance the value of distributed photovoltaic (PV) resources for the community, the utility and the grid by reducing peak loads, firming capacity and maximizing overall system efficiency. It will help build a strategy that can be replicated throughout SMUD’s service territory. The project will integrate energy storage into an existing PV environment, a residential solar community in Rancho Cordova, California, and test new consumer control concepts and PV inverter control within an advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) system.

“Energy storage is considered the holy grail because it is the key to bringing significant quantities of renewable energy onto the grid. When it can be easily controlled by both a utility and consumers, it offers a compelling solution for optimizing the grid,” said Peter L. Corsell, CEO, GridPoint. “We are pleased to be partnering with SMUD on this deployment, which will likely provide significant lessons for the industry as a whole.”

GridPoint’s software will monitor and control solar production and storage assets in real time, allowing SMUD to determine how to make them a predictable and more valuable energy resource. GridPoint’s software will be used to dispatch stored energy from advanced batteries to reduce peak demand, power or back up homes’ critical loads, charge the batteries, or export solar into SMUD’s distribution system.

The integration of GridPoint’s software with SMUD’s AMI system will facilitate household load control via GridPoint’s home energy management portal, a critical element of the project. The portal will allow consumers to view household energy usage, PV production and output, and energy storage capacity, and also receive and respond to real-time pricing signals from SMUD to curtail usage during periods of peak demand.

GridPoint’s capabilities will also enable the utility to evaluate whether capacity firming and advanced pricing signals influence consumer behavior. And it will allow SMUD to observe consumer preferences and interaction with the technology in order to provide innovative services and increase the effectiveness of energy conservation programs.

“We expect that both SMUD and our customers will benefit from GridPoint’s capabilities, which include providing flexibility to home owners in managing their energy use and balancing the load curve to improve overall reliability and efficiency,” said Jim Shetler, SMUD Assistant General Manager, Energy Supply.

GridPoint’s software aggregates and manages an intelligent network of distributed energy resources that controls load, stores energy and produces power. Utilities efficiently balance supply and demand, improve grid reliability and empower consumers with user-friendly software to manage energy consumption. With GridPoint’s interoperable enterprise-class server technology, utilities rapidly integrate and manage emerging technologies, resulting in a practical path to developing a clean, efficient 21st century grid.

GridPoint is working with utilities nationwide including Austin Energy, Duke Energy and Xcel Energy. The company was recently named to the Global Cleantech 100 and in 2008 was selected by the World Economic Forum as a Technology Pioneer.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Hydropower Funding, Potential for 60.000 MW by 2025

The following is statement from National Hydropower Association Executive Director Linda Church Ciocci regarding the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) announcement today that seven hydropower projects will receive $30.6 million in Recovery Act funding to spur clean-energy investment and job growth.

"NHA applauds Secretary Steven Chu and Under Secretary Kristina Johnson on the commitment DOE is demonstrating to affordable, renewable energy and family-supporting job creation with today’s hydropower project funding announcement. Through public-private investments, DOE is helping to foster opportunities to develop the more than 60,000 megawatts of clean, domestic generating capacity and 700,000 jobs experts believe the U.S. hydropower industry can create by 2025.

"All of the hydropower projects Under Secretary Johnson announced for funding today during her appearance at NHA member Voith Hydro's manufacturing plant in York, Pennsylvania, involve enhancing existing facilities to make them more productive, while improving their environmental footprints. In a report NHA released last month, we identified opportunities to create nearly 9,000 megawatts of new capacity through similar upgrades by 2025.

“We also welcomed Under Secretary Johnson’s comments about DOE’s commitment to doubling hydropower resources, through efforts like this. NHA believes that initiatives like this will propel our industry toward President Obama's goal of building a clean-energy economy that includes hydropower.

"Just as our predecessors helped lift the country out of the Great Depression by creating jobs and building hydroelectric facilities to power new commerce, today's hydropower industry will serve our 21st-century demands for affordable, clean energy, strong environmental performance, and economic benefits from job creation and investment.

"NHA is pleased to congratulate both DOE and the seven hydropower projects for their commitment to this effort. As an industry, we stand ready to support this and other initiatives that will serve Americans now and for generations to come.”