Market Analysis Insights
A Transition to a Securitized Market? Perhaps Credit Enhancements Offer an Opportunity to Leverage Market InvestmentSubmitted by Michael Mendelsohn on Fri, 05/17/2013 - 8:00am
How does the solar industry transition from the current project-based financing structure to one where more capital is available at faster speed and lower cost ? That was the question discussed by various industry stakeholders in a recent meeting of the Solar Access to Public Capital (SAPC) working group convened by NREL. The answer the industry seeks might lie in public capital vehicles, such as asset-backed securities, master limited partnerships, and other mechanisms designed to pool projects and allow investment via a liquid, tradable product. These vehicles could increase the availability of capital because they represent a simpler and lower-cost mechanism for investors, such as pension and insurance funds, to commit capital to solar projects .
Emerging from the 2008 financial crisis with new incentives, innovative business models, and rapidly declining costs, photovoltaics (PV) have gone on to achieve installation at rates unprecedented in their 40 year-long U.S. commercial history. And, despite some headwinds, PV deployment will likely see sustained levels of investment and deployment in the near term.
In the 1990 Golden Globe winning film "Green Card," Frenchman (and recent Russian resident) Gerard Depardieu and American Andie McDowell enter into a farcical marriage of convenience so he can become a U.S.
The U.S. electric power sector has recently undergone perhaps the most dramatic structural shift in history dating back to World War II. Changes in generation mix have occurred primarily due to low-priced natural gas, but also to rapid growth in renewable output.
Emerging markets have been hot investment opportunities since the end of the Cold War and with the rapid globalization of the late 20th century. Now the solar industry, looking for lifelines outside of its bread-and-butter markets of Europe and the U.S., is also getting in to the emerging markets game.
For developers trying to monetize the federal tax benefits for a given project, finding a tax equity partner can be a lonely process. Tax equity investors consist of a limited pool of suitors—investment bankers and a few other firms—who can tolerate the array of risks associated with this type of investment, including:
For most people, the word "JEDI" conjures up images of distant galaxies, epic light-saber battles, fuzzy Ewoks, and fatherly plot twists. For us here at NREL, however, JEDI is more likely associated with a series of models rather than a series of movies.
Geothermal capacity additions are on track to top 100 MW in 2012, making this year one of the best for geothermal deployment in the last decade [1,2]. This could be a tentative sign that conditions have been improving for geothermal finance (traditionally, finance has been one of the principal barriers to the technology's wider adoption).
It is no secret that the last couple years have been rough for PV manufacturers globally. Panel makers have had to contend with compressed profit margins and an oversaturated market, both of which have driven many firms to shutter operations and enter into bankruptcy protection.
What's the easiest way to avoid purchasing costly catastrophe insurance for your renewable energy project? Don't site your project in an area with a high probability of natural disasters. But this is easier said than done.