As digital communication technology improves, the world seems to be getting smaller and smaller.
And as quarterly financial reports continued to roll in this week, energy markets showed a high degree of correlation and interconnection around the world.
Wind turbine manufacturing company, Cleantech Solutions reported a weak quarter despite the booming renewable energy market in China, because it exports heavily around the world. See: Mixed Wind Sector Weights On Chinese Results.
Although an interdependent 21st century global economy can hurt some, for others, the vision of an interconnected energy world is one that promises a cleaner, greener and more efficient energy future. Watch: Siemens' Eye For The Future.
In Turkey, strained utilities are looking to the American companies for investments and innovative technology that can help the country keep up with rapidly increasing energy demand. Read: From Washington To Istanbul.
And in Europe, IBM is working with consumer and industry groups to push regulators in various countries towards implementing smart grid solutions. Key to this process will be cross-border dialogue, IBM's North East Europe Leader for the Energy & Utilities Industry Gavin Jones told AOL Energy.
"A lot of people in Copenhagen work there but live across the way in Sweden and drive across the bridge each day to work," he said. If electric vehicles and smart grid applications are deployed, those people will want to plug their cars into outlets in "both Sweden and Denmark," he said. Read the rest of the story: Europe's Smart Grid Journey.
Back To The Industry
In the United States, Washington emptied for August immediately following the resolution of the debt crisis. The news shifted focus back to the industry itself, which is responding to economic concerns with increased consolidation. Read more: Deal Pressure Continues As Power Sector Consolidates.
Noble Energy and CONSOL Energy announced this week that they have a partnered to boost their drilling rigs in the state's Marcellus Shale from four to sixteen in the next four years. Noble Energy will pay $1.07 billion for a 50% interest in CONSOL's 663,350 net undeveloped acres of natural gas properties in Pennsylvania and West Virginia as part of a deal worth $3.4 billion to CONSOL. For the full story, read: Natural Gas Deal Market Fires Up.
At First Solar, financial pressures have caused a company-wide shake-up as Jens Meyerhoff, president of the Utility Systems Business Group and former CFO, announced his departure from the company "to step back and reflect." He will be replaced by James Brown, currently the Senior VP of Utility System Business Sales, while Frank DeRosa's role as Senior VP of Business Development for the Americas will be expanded. DeRosa will report to Brown, who will in turn report to First Solar CEO Rob Gillette. See the full story: First Solar Shakeup.
Some companies were not able to pull through recent financial turbulence. Evergreen Solar announced it was filing for bankruptcy this week, following several difficult years of decreasing revenues. Read: Not So Evergreen.
As the industry continues to innovate with all kinds of creative solutions for a clean and reliable energy future--such as biofuels and nanotechnology--it remains to be seen how global partnerships will transform the sector.