Late last year my colleagues and I visited a remote village in rural Rajasthan, India. We were greeted by village leaders offering fresh flower garland necklaces while a joyous collection of enthusiastic, young boys beat drums and tins of all sizes in the background.
A bipartisan consensus in America is now putting President Barack Obama's signature Paris Climate Accord into action. We have House Speaker Paul Ryan and the President working in lockstep to direct the country into a clean energy future.
If today's energy markets are hazy, the long-term picture is less so. With the exigencies of climate change bearing down and the efficiencies of solar and other renewables rising, the world, to the dismay of Big Oil and Gas, is inching toward a renewable revolution.
Some businesses are being sold battery systems to store energy, but not necessarily from solar or other renewable resources. In many cases, such installations are designed purely to profit from storing grid energy at night, then selling power back to the grid during the day.
Some argue that wind and solar are the only acceptable means of going green. Others make the point that only carbon-free nuclear power can generate the volume required to support whole cities. These arguments can be distractions.
If we care solely about EROEI (energy return on energy invested), there are many (MANY) things to do before putting up on solar panels. If, however, we care broadly about EROI (Educational Return On Investment), then the solar panels begin to make sense as part of an educational energy investment.
When I bought my house, which the bank owns but kindly allows me to pay for, I was thrilled to have a big yard with lots of beautiful trees. Apparently, the trees don't feel the same, which is why, after a recent storm, the oak was on me.
Some say that expanding trade with Iran will somehow make it kindlier. They said that about Germany before World War I and China now. Nations have other reasons besides economics to be nasty -- for instance, paranoia, power for the sake of power and religion.
In other words, global warming is injecting steroids into weather disasters. Without countermeasures, it will get much worse. Yet the response among deniers in Congress is to escalate their campaign to sabotage any government effort to reduce the pollution responsible for climate change.
Working on climate change and clean energy involves constantly imagining a cleaner, more sustainable future. We are driven by the narrative, the narrative of existential necessity, of low-carbon energy overtaking the fossil fuel industry. Ultimately to help people.
With energy poverty emerging as one of the most dramatic symptoms of the recession -- six out of every 10 households are struggling to pay their energy bills -- it is high time that Greece seized upon its greatest and still largely unexploited asset: the Sun.
Energy that relies on naturally-available resources like the sun has an inherently equalizing quality: It is equally available to everyone. Lagos, Mumbai, Dhaka and Caracas offer four examples of innovative projects to harness solar energy, or even to control solar heat.
Today's utility doesn't have to fail, and can even lower the long run costs to its customers. But if the leadership doesn't move quickly and aggressively to meet the challenges of the Renewable Revolution, the next CEO will, and he or she will be there soon.
Solar is the only clean energy source that just about anyone can install and manage for themselves. That's why the sun will be shining even brighter on investors who see the opportunity and catch the next solar powered wave.
The February ribbon-cutting for Gigawatt Global's new $24 million solar field in Rwanda was an impact investment showcase. More than 28,000 solar panels, arranged in the shape of the African continent, added six percent to the entire country's electricity production.
The Green Wall Street Summit happened this past week as it has every year since 2002. It was an amazing gathering of thinkers, entrepreneurs, innovators, and general investors who want to see Wall Street become a source of restoration for the whole planet and not just wealth for the few.