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The University of New South Wales in Sydney has signed an agreement to ensure 100% of its electricity needs will be met by solar photovoltaics.

The university announced this week that from 2019 it will buy 124,000 megawatt hours of clean electricity each year from a future solar farm in the state.

It is expected that the 15-year agreement will allow the institution to achieve its goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2020.

“This landmark initiative is an exciting step towards realising (our) goal of carbon neutrality on energy use by 2020 and reflects our commitment to making a positive global impact”, said Professor Ian Jacobs, the university’s President and Vice-Chancellor.

He added that the agreement will provide low-carbon electricity “at a cost which is economically and environmentally attractive when compared to fossil fuel-sourced supplies”.

The solar farm, called Sunraysia, will be constructed next year and is expected to start providing renewable power to the university by the second quarter of 2019. It will also supplement the large number of solar arrays already on campus rooftops.

The university has additionally signed a contract with Origin, an electricity retailer, to manage the intermittency of solar power. The company will also provide electricity during the construction of the plant.

The state’s Minister for Energy, Don Harwin, applauded the agreement, commenting that “it’s not only great for the environment but it will deliver jobs and investment in regional New South Wales".

He added: “Already a world leader in solar PV technologies, this agreement is yet another demonstration of UNSW’s commitment to a clean energy future.”

Consultants Energy Action, who advised on the deal, said that the “ground-breaking agreement” provided long-term certainty on price. Chief Executive Officer, Ivan Slavich, said: “We are seeing a strong trend amongst corporate energy users turning to Power Purchase Agreements as a way to hedge against future pricing movements and to meet their green energy objectives”.

Image Credit: Maoneng Australia

For the second year running, the environment has topped a report into the risks posed to global well-being and security.

The World Economic Forum’s annual Global Risks Perception Survey, released this week, highlights the continued need to address environmental dangers across the world.

The report asked almost 1,000 global experts to rank 30 potential risks. Respondents focussed on the dangers posed by extreme weather, biodiversity loss, and a failure to combat climate change.

It follows the news from NASA yesterday that 2017 was the second warmest for global temperatures since records began in 1880.

Extreme weather events in particular topped the list for the single most prominent risk. This also comes shortly after a year of unprecedented natural disasters; examples of which include Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria hitting North America and the Caribbean over the summer months, causing an estimated $300 billion in damages. At the same time, Bangladesh was impacted by severe flooding which led to the deaths of 1,200 people, and affected more than 41 million.

Despite the multiple risks posed by the environment, the report also details that the global economy was in good health and that political leaders have a “golden opportunity” to address these challenges. “A widening economic recovery presents us with an opportunity that we cannot afford to squander, to tackle the fractures that we have allowed to weaken the world’s institutions, societies and environment”, said Professor Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman, World Economic Forum.

Alison Martin, Group Chief Risk Officer, Zurich Insurance Group also stressed that governments could do more, commenting: “Environmental risks, together with a growing vulnerability to other risks, are now seriously threatening the foundation of most of our commons. Unfortunately we currently observe a “too-little-too-late” response by governments and organisations to key trends such as climate change. It’s not yet too late to shape a more resilient tomorrow, but we need to act with a stronger sense of urgency in order to avoid potential system collapse”.

The UK’s wind power sector has reached new heights this week by breaking its record for the amount of electricity generated at any one time.

At lunchtime on Tuesday, wind power was generating 13.6 gigawatts (GW), supplying 29% of all electricity in Britain. The previous record was 12.4GW, set in December 2017. By contrast, coal power was producing 2.5GW at the time.

The record is the latest example of the central role that wind power, and renewables, is now playing in the UK’s rapidly changing energy mix. Figures for 2017 show that wind generated 14.6% of electricity, while all low-carbon sources provided a record 50%. Fossil fuels provided 47.7% across the whole year.

Dr Jonathan Marshall, Energy Analyst at the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU) commented on the record: “Breaking short-term output records on top of monthly and annual figures clearly shows that wind is now a major part of the UK electricity mix, and will continue to be in the future. Claims that the grid would be unable to handle 5, 10 or 20% wind power have been shown to be well wide of the mark.

The figures were announced by the Drax power company, which compiles official data from the National Grid.
 

According to industry data, the UK now has 5,700MW of installed offshore wind and over 12,000MW of onshore wind. It is the established world leader in offshore wind, with more capacity than any other country. However, its onshore wind sector has stalled in recent years due to government opposition.

Dr. Marshall highlighted that the UK could generate much more clean electricity from wind power if the government removed the barriers which are hindering new investment in the technology: “Possessing some of the windiest regions in Europe, the UK is poised to lead its peers in wind generation. Analysis has shown a UK resource of nearly 500 terawatt hours per year, more than a third more than current annual power consumption. The government has shown its willingness to install new capacity offshore, but is lagging on onshore wind as other countries move ahead, and as its official advisors call for barriers preventing the cheapest form of electricity generation to be removed”

Image Credit: David Dixon/CC

The French government has unveiled new proposals to accelerate the development of wind power in the country.

The ten-point plan, released on Thursday, aims to half the amount of time it takes to construct projects and speed up deployment.

The government’s ambitions are to increase the amount of wind power capacity in the country to between 21,800-26,000 megawatts (MW) by 2023. The latest figures show that 13,760MW has currently been installed, the equivalent of powering 11 million households.

The document includes proposals to speed up the amount of time projects are held-up in court procedures, reform tax revenues and reduce light from turbines.

One of the main reasons for the delays has been repeated litigation from wind farm opponents. 75% of these cases are rejected, according to the industry, but the result is to significantly delay construction times.

“Currently it takes seven to nine years to develop offshore wind projects,” said junior ecology minister Sebastien Lecornu.

“The direct consequence of this is a lengthening of the time it takes to complete a project -- seven to nine years on average -- compared to three to four years in Germany”.

Despite the delays, wind power still continues to increase across the country. The French wind energy association, France Energie Eolienne (FEE), released figures this week which showed that the country had installed a record 1,692MW of new capacity in 2017.

Olivier Perot, President of FEE, commented that the plan will help increase awareness of issues and promote better decision-making: “This is essential to ensure a sustained level of development in a concerted, harmonious, and pragmatic way", he said in a statement.

Mr. Perot added that he was “very confident” that the country would reach a target of reaching 15,000MW by the end of the year.

Figures for 2017 show strong growth in wind power across France.

Source: France Energie Eolienne 

A new study has highlighted the decline in financial aid to fisheries in developing countries.

The researchers, from UBC and the Stockholm Resilience Centre, analysed aid data from the OECD between 2010-2015. They found that while overall aid increased by 13% to $133 billion, the proportion of this going to fisheries actually declined by 30 percent. In addition, projects focusing on climate change adaptation in fisheries saw a 77 percent decline.

“These findings are out of alignment with recent international commitments, including the Sustainable Development Goals”, says the study published in the journal Marine Policy.

In particular, Oceania’s development aid towards combating climate issues in fisheries fell by 44 percent. This figure is notable given how vulnerable small island states are to climate impacts and the central importance that fisheries play to these economies.

"Sustainable fisheries make good economic sense not only as a source of employment and regular catches, but also because of their nutritional value," said co-author Colette Wabnitz at a recent talk. "Investments in small-scale, sustainable fisheries enhance climate change resilience and give vulnerable communities access to healthy food while preserving traditional diets."

The study identifies a number of key reasons why aid has fallen in these areas: risk aversion among donors; redirection to other sectors impacted by climate change, and to some extent fisheries being left out of decision-making procedures.

To combat this problem, the researchers recommended raising the profile of fisheries to better align the sector with international commitments. This could improve the economic opportunities and sustainable use of marine ecosystems.  

Robert Blasiak, post-doctoral researcher at the Stockholm Resilience Centre, said:

"Tremendous advances in modelling have made it possible to identify countries that will be particularly vulnerable to climate change impacts. Science is enabling practical action to prioritize the most vulnerable areas, in line with stated international commitments”

"Fisheries are at the nexus of health, nutrition, livelihoods, and economic security, if aid can help to get fisheries ‘right’, the positive impacts will extend into lots of areas."


ODA = Official Development Assistance.

Source: Stockholm Resilience Centre. 

Leading fashion companies including Zara, ASOS, H&M and global luxury group Kering have pledged to foster circularity and boost sustainability in the fashion industry.

Under the guidance of Global Fashion Agenda - an organisation committed to closing the production loop in the industry -  fashion representatives gathered last May to discuss how they can take important steps towards sustainability.

After the event, 64 of the world’s leading fashion companies signed a commitment to accelerate the transition to a circular business model that reduces the industry’s overwhelming waste.

Among the signatories were big brands such as Adidas, ASOS, Inditex, and Hugo Boss.  This week, however, each of these companies announced their action plan with specific pledges.

The pledges address 4 areas: design for circularity, increasing the volume of used garments collected, increasing the volume of used garments resold, and increasing the garments made from recycled post-consumer textile fibres.

Design for circularity received the most attention meaning that companies will focus on either training their designers in circular design strategies to implement circular design principles, such as increased durability, reparability, and recyclability.

        

                                            Source Global Fahion Agenda 

For example, ASOS has pledged that by 2020 it will have trained its designers on circular product design and will also implement circular principles for packaging. In addition, it will launch a garment collection scheme and a recycling programme for customers in UK and Germany.

Inditex, the company which owns Zara, Stradivarius, Massimo Duty, Bershka, and Pull and Bear, pledged that by 2020 all of its 2,000 local stores will have an active garment collection scheme in partnership with local organisations which can re-distribute and recycle the garments.

Eva Kruse, CEO of Global Fashion Agenda, said: “Since the 64 companies signed the commitment, I’ve been very curious to learn about their company targets”.

“We have now reviewed all 143 of the targets, and although the focus areas and level of engagement vary from company to company, they all share a common feature by taking steps to transition to a circular fashion industry. I find that very encouraging”, she explained.

You can access all the 143 pledges from all the signatories here.

Targeting the finances of companies which extract and burn fossil fuels is now seen as an important way of combating dangerous climate change.

According to campaigners 350.org, 830 institutions with a total value of $6.01 trillion have already made different commitments to divest away from fossil fuels. These include a broad cross-section of society, including churches, pension funds, families and governments.

While some leaders recommend engagement with the fossil fuel industry, others feel more direct action is necessary to stem the rise in global temperatures.

In this piece, we highlight our top five picks from the gathering pace of divestment pledges made around the world.

New York 

Both the Governor of New York State and the Mayor of New York City have announced significant plans to divest the local government’s holdings in fossil fuel assets.

In December 2017, Governor Andrew Cuomo said he wanted to cease all new investments in fossil fuel activities and create a roadmap to divest these assets from the state’s $200 billion pension fund.

The Common Fund looks after the retirement assets of over one million people, but has holdings in over 50 oil and gas companies. These amounted to “billions of public employee dollars”, according to the Governor. Mr. Cuomo stated the move would “lead to a more secure retirement fund for countless New Yorkers while also helping to achieve the state's clean energy goals."

The Mayor of New York, Bill de Blasio, closely followed suit in January by announcing the city’s five pension funds would also seek to remove an estimated $5 billion in over 190 fossil fuel companies.

“This is what climate leadership looks like”, responded Michael Brune at The Sierra Club.

The Rockefeller Brothers Fund

The Rockefeller Brothers Fund was founded in 1940 by the descendants of John D. Rockefeller, known for being one of the most successful oil businessmen in history.

Rockefeller built a huge empire around the Standard Oil company, which later became ExxonMobil, Chevron and other major oil companies still in existence.

The foundation’s strong connections to the petroleum industry, and resulting $870 million fortune, made its 2014 decision to divest from fossil fuels all the more historic.

In an interview with The Guardian, Valerie Rockefeller Wayne, who chairs the fund, said: “We all have a moral obligation…our family in particular – the money that is for our grant-making, and what we are doing now that helps fund our lifestyles came from dirty fuel sources”.

Its immediate focus was eliminating its exposure to coal and tar sands, which now represent a mere 0.1% of the fund. As of 2017, total fossil fuel exposure had been reduced to 1.7%.

World Council of Churches

A moral victory for the divestment campaign was achieved when the World Council of Churches, representing 345 religious bodies and over half a billion Christians around the world, ruled out any investments in fossil fuels.

While the organisation had no current assets to divest, the decision in 2015 showed how the campaign’s strength, and moral imperative, was being taken up by all sections of society.

The Council revealed its decision in one sentence of a policy document: “The committee discussed the ethical investment criteria, and considered that the list of sectors in which the WCC does not invest should be extended to include fossil fuels”.

Climate leader Bill McKibben said at the time that the council’s decision was “a remarkable moment for the 590 million Christians in its member denominations: a huge percentage of humanity says ‘this far and no further.’”

Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund

Norway has the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, holding $1 trillion of assets, which represent 1.3% of all global stocks and shares.

It was established to invest the surplus from Norway’s thriving state-owned petroleum industry and acts as a pension pot for citizens, representing almost $200,000 per person in the country.

The fund has $38 billion in oil and gas companies, but this amount could soon be reduced to zero following a recommendation in late 2017 that the government dump all its petroleum holdings.

This recommendation can be traced to 2004 when a council was created to ensure the fund’s money was being spent along ethical guidelines. To date, it has directly excluded investing in companies which, for example, breach human rights or build nuclear weapons.

This powerful tool was extended to coal energy in 2014, and the fund has since divested from 77 companies in the industry.

More significant though was the recommendation from the fund's managers, Norge Bank, that the government remove all of its holdings in oil and gas, the historical source of its immense wealth.  

“This will make the government’s wealth less vulnerable to a permanent drop in oil and gas prices”, said Deputy Governor Egil Matsen in an overtly non-political statement.

Whether the Norwegian government follows through on the proposal still remains to be seen. A decision is expected this year.

AXA

In recent years, the corporate insurance giant has become something of a climate leader and activist.

In 2015, it announced an initial €500 million divestment from the coal industry, which by the end of 2017 it increased to €2.4 billion. It has also completely removed its €700 million investment from the oil sands industry.

Just as significant is the company’s decision to stop insuring any coal-fired power plants and all oil sands pipelines, a major signal to other insurers to get out of this market.

AXA has also decided to increase investments in clean energy, which it says will reach €12 billion by 2020.

The company explained its reasoning in a recent statement: “If our world gets 4°C hotter, it will no longer be insurable”.

“We hope that our call for climate action will be heard by public and private-sector players, so that we may join forces and do everything we can to slow global warming and reduce its impact”

Header Image Credit: 350.org

Saudi Arabia has recently announced its plans to deploy at least $7 billion worth of renewable energy projects, focusing its strategy on taking advantage of the country’s solar potential.

The projects will be awarded through a tendering process aimed at adding more than 4 gigawatts (GW) of renewable energy capacity. Solar power projects will account for 3,250 megawatts (MW) and wind energy will make up 800 MW.

These figures represent a tremendous push compared to last year, as during 2017 the Kingdom tendered only 300 MW in solar projects and 400 MW in wind.

The news came from Turki Mohammed Al Shehri, Head of the Kingdom’s Renewable Energy Project Development Office, during an interview in Adu Dhabi’s Sustainability Week.

Although the Middle Eastern oil producers are seeking to increase renewable energy capacity to boost oil production for exports, the news is still beneficial for the energy transition, as increased demand will encourage technological advancements, which will further reduce renewable energy prices.

To this end, it has embarked on a strategy to develop 9,000 MW of renewable energy capacity by 2023- a plan estimated to cost the Kingdom roughly $50 billion.

Last October, Saudi Arabia marked the launch of the ambitious programme when it awarded French company EDF a contract to build the first 300 MW solar farm. The contract broke the world record for the lowest bid in solar as the kingdom will be buying each kilowatt-hour (kWh ) for $ 1.7 cents.

The previous record was set in 2016 by Abu Dhabi after it awarded a contract at $2.42 cents per kWh. Solar energy projects in the Middle East have set several lowest-bid records, mainly due to advantages of cheap land for the plants, favourable transmission infrastructure, and improvements in solar technology.

To date, the United Arab Emirates meets 98 percent of its power needs from gas. The aim is for the figure to drop to less than 76 percent by 2021 with renewables supplying the rest. 

The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has launched the Global Commission on the Geopolitics of Energy Transformation to examine how renewable energy is affecting the dynamics of energy international relations between states.

To date, geopolitical analyses have largely focused on fossil fuels, such as oil and gas. Big energy players have dominated the international energy landscape merely due to the abundance in combustible natural resources.

 However, the beauty of renewable energy sources is that not only can they offer 100 percent emissions-free energy, but they can also shake the incumbent global energy landscape. In this new reality, sun, wind, hydro and other renewable energy sources can play an equally strategic role as fossil fuels, altering the dynamics of energy cooperation and trade among nations.

Adnan Z. Amin, IRENA Director-General, said: “The global energy landscape is witnessing rapid and disruptive change that will have far-reaching effects on geopolitical dynamics”.

“Renewable energy resources are abundant, sustainable and have the power to significantly improve energy access, security and independence”.

“At the same time, the large-scale deployment of variable sources of renewable energy such as solar PV and wind is fostering greater cross-border energy trade and cooperation between nations. Understanding these changing dynamics in a way that informs policy-makers, will be the primary goal of the commission”.

The new Commission was established with the support of Germany, Norway, and the United Arab Emirates- an interesting group of countries as 2 out of 3 are some of the world’s biggest energy exporters, and will be chaired by Olafur Grimsson, the former President of Iceland.

Mr. Grimsson added: “The implications of energy transformation are becoming one of the most debated issues in the global energy agenda. The commission can make an important contribution to these global discussions, on the basis of solid evidence and analysis as well as a diverse range of perspectives”.

The announcement took place last week, during IRENA’s annual assembly which was held during the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week.

The Commission will comprise 12 experts in international energy and global security issues and is expected to release its first report in January 2019. 

The Cars Jeans Stadion in The Hague, Netherlands is about to commission a vast battery plant tied to electric vehicle charging stations, showcasing the versatile business opportunities that battery storage offers whilst facilitating the energy transition.

A new partnership between the municipality of The Hague, the Card Jeans Stadion- home of ADO Den Haag, and Dutch energy companies Scholt Energy Control and Alfen will bring to life the innovative project aimed at boosting renewable energy production and the integration of electric vehicles without destabilising the grid.

The batteries will store electricity produced by the stadium’s solar panels, to be used during night time. This means that the stadium will be 100 percent energy self-sufficient.

In addition, the stored energy will be used to charge electric vehicles through the installation of a charging hub comprised of 20 charge points fostering the deployment of emission-free vehicles across the city.

Ton Koning, Program Manager Air Quality at the municipality of The Hague, said: "Through this initiative, renewable energy can be used locally for the electric vehicle charging hub. We hope this will further stimulate the use of electric vehicles and consequently improve the air quality in our city”.

However, the use of the project goes much further. Sander Drissen from Scholt Energy explained how the project will work: “This project is truly unique in the combination of use cases. We will use the battery to store the oversupply of renewable energy generated during the day”.

“This energy can then be used in the evenings when it is most needed. In this way, we make optimal use of the generated renewable energy”.

“We will also smooth out the grid impact of a large number of electric vehicles that plug-in at the same location at the same time. And finally, when the stadium is not being used, we can use the storage system for energy trading to further improve our business case”, he added.

In a nutshell, the energy project represents a micrography of the smart energy grids of the future.

Andreas Plenk, Global Sales Director Energy Storage at Alfen, explained how integrating grid connections, EV charging equipment, and energy storage will play “an increasingly important role to incorporate the growing amount of renewables and electric vehicles, as these are causing an imbalance on the electricity grid”.

The size of the battery has not been revealed, although the project is expected to start operating this January. 

Inspired by the recent move by New York, the city council of Los Angeles has announced its intentions to file a lawsuit against oil and gas companies over allegations that they have consciously contributed to climate change.

Last week, Los Angeles city council members Mike Bonin and Paul Koretz submitted a written proposal requesting that the City Attorney Mike Feuer assess the feasibility of legal action.

“Reports made public by InsideClimate News in recent years have revealed that oil companies have been aware of climate change and the industry’s role in causing it since as early as the late 1970s”, the release reads.

The proposal claims that oil and gas companies have known about  the impact of greenhouse gas emissions released from fossil fuel combustion would be for decades; it also suggests that climate change was a contributing factor in the intensity of the recent fires experienced in California.

It explained that research has warned that by 2050 average temperatures in LA are expected to increase by 5 degrees, creating more smog and posing significant health threats to the public.  

Last week, New York City asked for billions in compensation from 5 oil companies deemed to have made the largest contributions to global warming- BP, Chevron, Conoco-Phillips, ExxonMobil and Royal Dutch Shell- a move that was celebrated heavily among the environmental community.

New York Mayor de Blasio said: “We’re bringing the fight against climate change straight to the fossil fuel companies that knew about its effects and intentionally misled the public to protect their profits”.

Mr. Bonin and Mr. Koretz concluded that “by knowing that their business practice was contributing to climate change and doing nothing to stop their destructive ways, the oil and gas industry should be held responsible  for the current and future damage climate change is causing our city”, adding that taxpayers should not bear the cost of climate change.

Last year, San Francisco and Oakland filed a lawsuit against the same oil and gas companies over rising sea levels, claiming that although the companies were aware of the impact they have on climate change “they launched a multi-million-dollar disinformation campaign to deny and discredit what was clear even to their own scientists: global warming is real and their product is a huge part of the problem”. 

New analysis from Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) has shown that in 2017 global spending on clean energy projects reached $333.5 billion.

This represents an increase in 3% from the previous year and only 7% short of the $360 billion record set in 2015. The figure also means that cumulative spending on clean energy has reached $2.5 trillion since the start of the decade.

Jon Moore, chief executive of BNEF, commented: “The 2017 total is all the more remarkable when you consider that capital costs for the leading technology – solar – continue to fall sharply. Typical utility-scale PV systems were about 25% cheaper per megawatt last year than they were two years earlier”.

Solar energy remains the dominant force in renewables, and the sector attracted a massive $160.8 billion of total investment in 2017; China again led the way with nearly half of this, at $86.5 billion. 53 gigawatts (GW) of new solar PV capacity was installed in the country.

One of the main reasons for this strong growth was the continued fall in the cost of solar, as well as an increase in projects on rooftops and industrial parks. Justin Wu, head of Asia-Pacific at BNEF, explained that these projects aren’t subject to government quotas; “Large energy consumers in China are now installing solar panels to meet their own demand”, he said.

While Chinese investment dominated the clean energy landscape, accounting for $132.6 billion of the total, the US remained in second with $56.9 billion, up 1% since 2016. This provides some encouragement to observers who thought the sector may have been damaged by the election, and rhetoric, of Donald Trump.

Elsewhere, clean energy spending fell in Japan, the UK and Germany. The 56% decrease in UK investment was “in the face of changes in policy support”, according to analysts.

The report highlighted that wind power was the second largest sector with $107.2 billion, a decrease of 12% from 2016, although a number of multibillion-dollar projects reached initial financing.

Source: Bloomberg New Energy Finance

The growth of renewables globally continues unabated. Bloomberg New Energy Finance estimates that global clean energy investment has risen from USD 62 billion in 2004 to USD 287 billion in 2016, with 195 countries signatory to the Paris Climate Agreement last year. California, which would rank as the sixth largest global economy in its own right, has plans to generate 100% of its electricity from renewable sources by as soon as 2045.

As a very interesting year for renewable energy draws to a close in India, it’s a good time to do some crystal ball gazing to try and predict what lies in store for us in the new year. 

New powertrain production strategies are expected to enable countries to work toward meeting new policies and regulations designed to limit emissions and boost fuel economy

A new report from examines the global market for low voltage electrification opportunities and challenges, providing global market forecasts for vehicle sales and the value of key components, segmented by global region, through 2026.

A combination of factors, including increasingly stringent fuel economy and emissions standards, is pushing the auto industry to reconsider its powertrain production strategies to electrification. Basic stop-start vehicles (SSVs) have become ubiquitous in many markets, and manufacturers are looking to advance the technology by increasing the operating voltage from 12 V to 48 V. : According to a new report from , global sales of light duty SSVs will exceed 57.6 million by 2026, accounting for 54 percent of all light duty vehicle sales—of these, about 21 percent will feature 48 V components.

“Current systems have reached the limit of practical electrical power availability at 12 V, and because efficiency and automation demands can be realized only by increasing the operating voltage, 48 V is the practical limit to avoid the need for additional safety protection,” says Sam Abuelsamid, senior research analyst at Navigant Research. “48 V stop-start systems will combine with other technologies, including micro- and mild-hybrid capabilities and electric turbochargers, to increase efficiency without the adoption of full hybrid or plug-in electric capability.”

This shift is expected to enable countries around the world to work toward meeting new policies and regulations designed to limit emissions and boost fuel economy, according to the report. New testing methodologies such as the World Light Duty Test Protocol (WLTP) and real driving emissions (RDE) tests, in addition to proposed bans on traditional internal combustion engines from the 2030s and 2040s onward in Europe and Asia, are just some of the challenges manufacturers hope low voltage electrification can overcome.

The report, , analyzes the global market for low voltage electrification opportunities and challenges. The study provides an overview of the market issues associated with improving light duty vehicle efficiency and the technologies that are likely to reach production. Global market forecasts for vehicle sales and the value of key components, segmented by global region, extend through 2026. The report also examines the main 48 V components related to low voltage vehicle electrification. An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the .

Contact: Lindsay Funicello-Paul

+1.781.270.8456

* The information contained in this press release concerning the report, Market Data: Low Voltage Vehicle Electrification, is a summary and reflects Navigant Research’s current expectations based on market data and trend analysis. Market predictions and expectations are inherently uncertain and actual results may differ materially from those contained in this press release or the report. Please refer to the full report for a complete understanding of the assumptions underlying the report’s conclusions and the methodologies used to create the report. Neither Navigant Research nor Navigant undertakes any obligation to update any of the information contained in this press release or the report.

Pg18 Perspective Sujoy Ghosh Country Head First Solar India

Mr.Sujoy Ghosh, Country Head, First Solar, India

2017 is shaping up to be a record year for solar PV installations worldwide as well as in India. We have also witnessed sub 2cents/kwhr tariffs in auctions in Saudi Arabia and Mexico for projects that are expected to be commissioned over the next 24-30 months, thereby creating a further compression in the overall value chain that needs to be met by equipment suppliers, financing agencies and the service providers (engineering, procurement and O&M).  Hence the companies that continue to focus on reducing costs, increasing scale and lowering their cost of capital/cost of doing business would be able to sustain through these times. Specifically on the PV module technology, the focus would remain on lowering of cost of production by either optimizing manufacturing processes, and/ or leveraging economies of scale. Also with the transition to more installations between the two tropics, there would be equal focus on long term reliability under harsher climates (hot and humid) and quality and consistency of processes would be under increased scrutiny from the end users. 1500V inverters would probably increase their market share as plant owners try to exploit every ounce of optimization feasible in order to achieve lower LCOE’s, while the scale of the blocks increase due to average increase in project capacities. 2018 would also see a an increased focus on hybridization of PV systems with storage or other forms of generation as grid capacity congestion issues begin to start becoming noticeable with the growth in both solar and wind in the recent past.

Pg18 George John mytrah

Mr. George John,Head -Mytrah Global Services,Mytrah Energy

Reverse bidding has become a norm in the renewable energy sector. The low tariffs especially pertaining to Solar sector can be attributed to the decreasing cost of solar modules due to advancement in technology. However, it is noteworthy that even today, most of our capacity comes
from Chinese manufacturers. The heavy emphasis by the government on ‘Make In India’ initiative is expected to drive the domestic manufacturers into building capacities to compete with the Chinese manufacturers. This would increase the self-reliance of the Solar sector by reducing dependencies.Intermittence in energy supply has been an age-old characteristic of renewable energy sector. Although Solar provides a more predictive forecast based on seasonality and time of the day, the power generation remains intermittent. The increasing global awareness on Battery storage and the technological innovations in this sector is bound to impact the Solar sector in the coming year. A successful breakthrough in terms of balancing the capacities and cost will make Solar sector more profitable in future. With Global companies such as Tesla overlooking Battery Storage innovations,this future might not be too far away.From an investment standpoint, Rooftop Solar has gained momentum and this trend is expected to continue into 2018. Rooftop Solar has seen investment from small scale investors as well, since it provides energy security coupled with government incentives.Another interesting trend we expect to see in Solar sector, especially in the near future, is the rise of smart grid solutions and Hybrid models using both wind and solar power generation. The increasing use of digitalization has already reached the Solar sector and we expect to see increased efficiencies because of this.In conclusion, 2018 will be an interesting year for Solar sector from supply chain point of view as well the enhanced efficiencies.

Pg17 Perspective SIndicatum

Mr. Devin Narang Country Head-India Sindicatum Renewable Energy Company.

Globally, India has probably the most robust policies in place for all forms of Renewable energy. What can be expected in 2018 borrows heavily from the initiatives the Government has in store for the sector. Specific targets and a well-defined roadmap to achieving them are encouraging. Addition of power generation capacity – especially through solar parks; building of domestic manufacturing capacities; refinements in Solar Policy (for utility scale & rooftop systems) and Bid Document – in particular, with regard to applicable duties and taxes; resolution of State-specific project development bottlenecks; and enhanced bankability of projects -  these are some initiatives in the offing by the Government. Technology, on the other hand has also grown steadily, reflecting in increased component efficiencies at competitive prices. However, with regard to PV modules, prices are expected to pick up from the lows seen hitherto while stabilizing at the optimum. Although the Indian market is nascent when it comes to Storage, it would be interesting to see how solar projects combined with storage sustain in the long run. Finally, two (interconnected) aspects that need concerted initiative from different stakeholders are: creation of energy demand and ensured energy offtake. Schemes such as ‘Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana’ (DDUGJY) and ‘Ujwal Discom Assurance Yojana’ (UDAY) have been important enabling factors from a macro perspective. Such developments have spurred growth in the sector – which stands at 15GW plus installed capacity on date. The achievement of 100GW of solar isn’t far.

Energy storage is redefining how smart energy solutions can support the ongoing urban energy transformation

A new report from examines the relationship between energy storage and smart cities, providing an overview of relevant applications as well as drivers and barriers.

Smart energy technologies are increasingly expected to help address the sustainability needs of smart cities to reduce carbon-intensive peak energy use and to develop resilient energy systems. : According to a new report from , the emergence of energy storage solutions in conjunction with the deployment of distributed energy resources (DER) will improve the delivery of smart energy solutions in smart cities.

“Smart energy technologies such as energy storage will increasingly be called on to address the sustainability needs of the urban energy transformation now underway,” says William Tokash, senior research analyst at Navigant Research. “Specifically, energy storage is now poised to support the delivery of low carbon DER to reduce peak energy use and improve the resilience capabilities of urban landscapes by enhancing access to reliable electricity supply.”

According to the report, energy storage has experienced significant growth in the past 2 years due in part to its unique ability to support the deployment of flexible energy capacity. The emergence of energy storage’s ability to make DER more flexible, less carbon-intensive, and more resilient is redefining how smart energy solutions can support the sustainability needs of an integrated smart city technology and solutions platform.

The report, , examines the role energy storage can play in smart cities and how smart cities can drive the deployment of energy storage. The study provides an overview of energy storage applications within smart cities, including drivers and barriers for energy storage, and discusses how energy storage works within an integrated energy as a service framework. It also analyzes the role of energy storage in the delivery of low carbon peak energy and improving resilience. An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the .

Contact: Lindsay Funicello-Paul

+1.781.270.8456

* The information contained in this press release concerning the report, Smart Cities and Energy Storage, is a summary and reflects Navigant Research’s current expectations based on market data and trend analysis. Market predictions and expectations are inherently uncertain and actual results may differ materially from those contained in this press release or the report. Please refer to the full report for a complete understanding of the assumptions underlying the report’s conclusions and the methodologies used to create the report. Neither Navigant Research nor Navigant undertakes any obligation to update any of the information contained in this press release or the report.

As a service models represent a shift in business spending and the beginning of a trend that is anticipated to become more common over the next 10 years

A new report from examines the global market for lighting as a service (LaaS) solutions in commercial buildings, providing market forecasts for revenue through 2026, as well as details on related services and the competitive landscape.

LaaS is the third-party management of a lighting system, including additional maintenance, financial, technical, or operational services. As more lighting products and controls come to market, LaaS is expected to experience a boost from customers who need assistance in choosing and maintaining up-to-date technologies that can provide cost savings to their businesses. : According to a new report from , global LaaS revenue is expected to grow from an estimated $662.6 million in 2017 to $2.6 billion by 2026, experiencing a compound annual growth rate of 16.6 percent.

“We are seeing a shift in the LaaS market from a traditional financing model to an increased number of turnkey services, which provide the customer with a full-scale offering from audit and design to installation to management and maintenance of the system,” says Krystal Maxwell, research analyst with Navigant Research. “The as a service business model, which shifts business spending from CAPEX to OPEX, allows companies to focus on their core business areas and ensures the outsourced business (LaaS) is being kept up to date with market developments by the service provider, especially through the growing number of turnkey services.”

According to the report, this shift in business spending is the beginning of a trend that is anticipated to become more common over the next 10 years. Additional market growth is expected to be driven by a maturing LED market, interest in the Internet of Things (IoT) applications, and increases to the bottom line.

The report, , examines the LaaS market for commercial buildings, with a focus on financing, maintenance, and turnkey services. The study addresses market issues, including key drivers and barriers, related to LaaS solutions. Global market forecasts for LaaS revenue, segmented by service type, building type, and region, extend through 2026. The report also examines the key services related to LaaS, as well as the competitive landscape. An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the .

Contact: Lindsay Funicello-Paul

+1.781.270.8456

* The information contained in this press release concerning the report, Lighting as a Service, is a summary and reflects Navigant Research’s current expectations based on market data and trend analysis. Market predictions and expectations are inherently uncertain and actual results may differ materially from those contained in this press release or the report. Please refer to the full report for a complete understanding of the assumptions underlying the report’s conclusions and the methodologies used to create the report. Neither Navigant Research nor Navigant undertakes any obligation to update any of the information contained in this press release or the report.

Blockchain can help mitigate the costs of dealing with issues caused by distributed and intermittent generation

A new report from examines potential use cases for blockchain in transactive energy (TE) systems within the distribution grid.

TE is a two-way grid management approach that ensures the proper functioning of power networks that have large amounts of distributed energy resources (DER) and allows DER owners to earn a commensurate return on their investments. Blockchain, a technology that supports decentralized transaction types, has emerged as a potential technology to underpin a TE platform in the utility industry. : According to a new report from , while not a one-size-fits-all solution, blockchain has the potential to deliver significant benefits to a TE platform.

“Are TE and blockchain an appropriate match in practice? There is no simple answer to that question because of the many different blockchain applications and TE programs,” says Stuart Ravens, principal research analyst with Navigant Research. “We do know that blockchain’s distributed ledger has many advantages over centralized databases.”

Blockchain, as part of a TE platform, could help mitigate the costs of dealing with the issues caused by distributed and intermittent generation, including power quality, equipment reliability, and network balancing. Historically, the costs for these issues have been borne by the utility customer base, leading to complaints that traditional customers are unfairly burdened for the benefits enjoyed by DER owners.

The report, , discusses potential blockchain use cases in TE systems. The study discusses the diversity of scenarios, application goals, and flavors of blockchain applications and TE programs. It also examines the requirements for TE, what blockchain brings to the TE table and provides recommendations for potential developers of TE solutions employing blockchain technology. An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the .

Contact: Lindsay Funicello-Paul

+1.781.270.8456

* The information contained in this press release concerning the report, Blockchain for Transactive Energy Platforms, is a summary and reflects Navigant Research’s current expectations based on market data and trend analysis. Market predictions and expectations are inherently uncertain and actual results may differ materially from those contained in this press release or the report. Please refer to the full report for a complete understanding of the assumptions underlying the report’s conclusions and the methodologies used to create the report. Neither Navigant Research nor Navigant undertakes any obligation to update any of the information contained in this press release or the report.

Trailing regions North America and Western Europe will continue to present smart meter project opportunities as more late adopters come to the table

A new report from analyzes the state of the global utility electric smart meter market, tracking data related to customer endpoints, meter manufacturers, advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) communications vendors, systems integrators, and meter data management (MDM) vendors.

The smart electric meter market remains strong as developed markets continue to mature through a mix of new deployments and second-generation upgrades. Meanwhile, developing markets are showing promise as new pilot- and commercial-scale projects continue to emerge. : According to a new report from , with upwards of 469 million smart meters at the end of 3Q 2017, China continues to lead the market, accounting for 68.7 percent of tracked global installations.

“The relatively developed markets of North America and Western Europe trail China in installations but will continue to present project opportunities as more late adopters come to the table in response to lower technology costs and proven use cases,” says Michael Kelly, research analyst with Navigant Research. “In addition, a higher frequency of replacement and upgrade projects is expected, and is already beginning to play out in parts of North America, Italy, and Sweden. These second-generation projects are likely to affect vendor share and communications share selection analyses, with powerline communications already demonstrating a notable decline.”

In other regions, such as Asia Pacific, Latin America, and the Middle East, the market remains fragmented or underdeveloped thanks to deployments in major countries and limited to no activity in others, according to the report. In Africa, the region continues to be inhibited by financial constraints, though more high-level activity is emerging from countries like Egypt, Nigeria, and South Africa.

The report, , provides an analysis of global utility smart meter projects. It tracks data related to global customer endpoints, meter manufacturers, AMI communications vendors, systems integrators, and MDM vendors. The Tracker also includes an examination of the technologies, timeframes, and vendor selections for AMI deployments around the world, along with vendor selection share analysis for North America. An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the .

Contact: Lindsay Funicello-Paul

+1.781.270.8456

* The information contained in this press release concerning the report, Global AMI Tracker 4Q17, is a summary and reflects Navigant Research’s current expectations based on market data and trend analysis. Market predictions and expectations are inherently uncertain and actual results may differ materially from those contained in this press release or the report. Please refer to the full report for a complete understanding of the assumptions underlying the report’s conclusions and the methodologies used to create the report. Neither Navigant Research nor Navigant undertakes any obligation to update any of the information contained in this press release or the report.

Energy storage has been called a “swiss army knife” because it’s highly versatile, adaptable and can provide many different types of benefits to the grid. This flexibility can be financially rewarding. For example, when storage is deployed in behind-the-meter (BTM) applications, it can be programmed to target different value streams, like ‘peak-demand shaving’, ‘time-of-use arbitrage’, or ‘self-consumption’. These ‘value streams’ are effectively different ways for an energy storage system (ESS) to make money by reducing a customer’s utility bill.

Mercom Capital Group, llc, a global clean energy communications and consulting firm, has released its annual report on funding and merger and acquisition (M&A) activity for the solar sector in 2017. 

Total global corporate funding into the solar sector, including venture capital/private equity (VC), debt financing, and public market financing raised came to $12.8 billion, a 41 percent increase compared to the $9.1 billion raised in 2016.  

To learn more about Mercom’s 2017 Solar Funding and M&A Report, visit: http://bit.ly/MercomSolarQ42017

"A strong fourth quarter pushed overall funding higher in 2017. Higher installation levels around the world, the lack of threat to the solar investment tax credit, lower than expected tariff recommendation by U.S. ITC, strong debt financing activity, and over a billion dollars in securitization deals helped the solar industry have a much better year in terms of financial activity compared to 2016. After several challenging years, most of the solar securities were up in 2017 reflecting overall positive sentiments around the solar industry even as several Chinese manufacturers decided to go private. Of course, all this could change swiftly if President Trump decides to impose higher tariffs in the trade case," commented Raj Prabhu, CEO and Co-Founder of Mercom Capital Group. 

Global VC investments came to $1.6 billion in 99 deals in 2017, up 30 percent from the $1.3 billion raised by 78 deals in 2016 - led by several large private equity deals in India.  

Solar downstream companies accounted for 85 percent of total VC funding in 2017, bringing in $1.4 billion of the total $1.6 billion raised. Thin-film companies brought in $106 million while service providers raised $47 million. 

Investments in PV technology companies came to $40 million and Balance of Systems (BoS) companies raised $36 million. The concentrated solar power (CSP) category raised $8 million and the concentrator photovoltaics (CPV) category received $6 million. 

The top VC/PE deals reported in 2017 included a deal for $200 million signed by Lightsource Renewable Energy. ReNew Power also had two deals of $200 million each, followed by Greenko Energy Holdings which raised $155 million. Hero Future Energies raised $125 million and CleanMax Solar raised $100 million. Overall, five of the top six solar VC funding deals in 2017 came from India.

There were 162 VC/PE investors that participated in funding rounds in 2017, with eight involved in multiple rounds: Engie, Avista Development, DSM Venturing, InnoEnergy, Innogy, International Finance Corporation (IFC), Shell, and Techstars. 

Public market financing was flat in 2017 to $1.7 billion raised in 33 deals from $1.8 billion raised in 27 deals in 2016. Three IPOs were logged during the year that raised a combined total of $363 million for Canadian Solar Infrastructure Fund, New Energy Solar Fund, and Clenergy. 

Announced debt financing in 2017 surged to $9.5 billion compared to $6 billion in 2016. There were six securitization deals in 2017 totaling $1.3 billion. Securitization deals surpassed the $1 billion for the  year, a first. 

Large-scale project funding announced in 2017 reached a $14 billion raised in 167 deals, compared to $9.4 billion raised in 133 deals during 2016. A total of 161 investors funded about 20.5 GW of large-scale solar projects in 2017 compared to 5.9 GW funded by 153 investors in 2016. 

The top investors in large-scale projects included Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC), which invested in 13 projects, followed by Santander with eight deals, and Commonwealth Bank of Australia and Siemens Financial Services with six deals each. 

$2.4 billion was raised by 16 residential and commercial solar project funds in 2017 which was down 50 percent compared to $4.9 billion raised by 30 funds in 2016. The top fundraisers were: Sunlight Financial, Sunnova, Solar Mosaic, SolarCity, and Spruce Finance. Since 2009, solar residential and commercial firms offering leases, PPAs, and loans have raised more than $24.8 billion in lease and loan funds. 

There were 71 corporate M&A transactions in the solar sector in 2017, up slightly from 68 transactions recorded in 2016. Solar downstream companies were involved in 51 of these transactions. Engie acquired three companies while BayWa, Brookfield Asset Management, Horizon Solar Power, Siva Power, Solar Spectrum, and Sonnedix acquired two companies each. The largest and the most notable transaction in 2017 was the $1.6 billion acquisition of FTP Power (sPower) by AES and Alberta Investment Management (AIMCo) from Fir Tree Partners.

Project acquisitions jumped up 67 percent as a record 228 large-scale solar projects with a combined capacity of more than 20.4 GW were acquired in 2017, compared to 2016 when 12.2 GW changed hands in 218 transactions. 

Mercom also tracked 187 large-scale project announcements across the globe that totaled 10.6 GW in Q4 2017 and 922 large-scale project announcements totaling 50.1 GW for all of 2017.

To learn more about Mercom’s 2017 Solar Funding and M&A Report, visit: http://bit.ly/MercomSolarQ42017

 

About Mercom Capital Group

Mercom Capital Group, llc, is a global communications and consulting firm focused exclusively on clean energy and financial communications. Mercom’s consulting division advises cleantech companies on new market entry, custom market intelligence, and overall strategic decision making. Mercom’s consulting division also delivers highly respected industry market intelligence reports covering Solar Energy and Smart Grid. Our reports provide timely industry happenings and ahead-of-the-curve analysis specifically for C-level decision making. Mercom’s communications division helps clean energy companies and financial institutions build powerful relationships with media, analysts, government decision makers, local communities, and strategic partners. For more information about Mercom Capital Group, visit: http://www.mercomcapital.com. To get a copy of Mercom’s popular market intelligence reports, visit: http://eepurl.com/cCZ6nT.

Combined, these regions will account for more than 32 GW of new capacity through 2026

A new report from Navigant Research examines the ancillary service market opportunities for energy storage, providing global market forecasts for capacity and revenue, segmented by service type and region, through 2026.

The increasing penetration of renewable energy and the retirement of conventional thermal power plants are causing major shifts in energy markets that are expected to result in a greater need for ancillary services. These services support the transmission of electric power from seller to purchaser to maintain reliable operations of the interconnected transmission system. Energy storage systems (ESSs) are emerging as a new source of ancillary services required to maintain stable and efficient grid operation. : According to a new report from , Asia Pacific, North America, and Western Europe are expected to be the leading markets for utility-scale ESS capacity for ancillary services through 2026, accounting for more than 32 GW.

“Ancillary services have provided a critical foundation for emerging energy storage industries in several markets around the world,” says Alex Eller, research analyst with Navigant Research. “These services are attractive for storage developers as they often have either structured contracts or well-established competitive markets that provide a reliable source of revenue for new projects.”

According to the report, ancillary services often provide the initial high value anchor service for new storage projects. Additional applications have become more viable as ESS prices have decreased and storage becomes a more integral component of the grid. As markets evolve in the transition to a more dynamic Energy Cloud network, increasing competition for providing ancillary services from different resources is expected.

The report, , examines the ancillary service market opportunities for energy storage, with a focus on four main ancillary services: spinning reserves, non-spinning reserve capacity, frequency regulation, and voltage support. The study provides an analysis of the market issues, including drivers, barriers, and regulatory issues, associated with energy storage for ancillary services. Global market forecasts for capacity and revenue, segmented by service type and region, extend through 2026. The report also provides an overview of the trends related to ancillary service markets for energy storage and projected market sizes in regions around the world. An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the .

Contact: Lindsay Funicello-Paul

+1.781.270.8456

* The information contained in this press release concerning the report, Market Data: Ancillary Service Markets for Energy Storage, is a summary and reflects Navigant Research’s current expectations based on market data and trend analysis. Market predictions and expectations are inherently uncertain and actual results may differ materially from those contained in this press release or the report. Please refer to the full report for a complete understanding of the assumptions underlying the report’s conclusions and the methodologies used to create the report. Neither Navigant Research nor Navigant undertakes any obligation to update any of the information contained in this press release or the report.

Through 2020, the market is projected to experience annual growth of around 38 percent

A new report from examines the global market conditions and regulatory policies for plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs), providing 10-year sales and population forecasts by powertrain type and scenario.

Recent developments in the PEV market, including the rollout of long-range battery EVs (BEVs) at sub-$40,000 price points, have positioned the segment for robust growth. Since PEVs were introduced in 2011, sales have experienced annual growth of 40 percent or more, and continued growth is expected. : According to a new report from , global PEV sales surpassed 1 million in 2017, and the market is projected to experience annual growth around 38 percent through 2020.

“Battery costs have shrunk dramatically in the last five years and promise to shrink further with the commercialization of solid-state batteries on the horizon,” says Scott Shepard, senior research analyst with Navigant Research. “In addition, increasing regulatory pressure in Europe and China may well push the PEV market to the aggressive end of the forecast range regardless of oil prices.”

While most of the global market can expect robust growth in the near term, the outlook in the United States is less certain based on the potential for federal level policy changes. According to the report, if US fuel efficiency policies and government subsidies are relaxed or removed, the country will find it difficult to keep pace with other markets.

The report, , analyzes the global market conditions and regulatory policies for PEVs. The study examines the next decade of the PEV market with a specific focus on how government interventions, vehicle economics, infrastructure, and automation will affect new markets and subsequent growth of the PEV population. The study provides 10-year sales and population forecasts of major regions by PEV powertrain type: BEV and plug-in hybrid EV (PHEV). Forecasts are provided by segment under conservative, base, and aggressive scenarios alongside historical data on BEV, PHEV, and overall light duty vehicle sales. An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the

Contact: Lindsay Funicello-Paul

+1.781.270.8456

* The information contained in this press release concerning the report, Market Data: EV Market Forecasts, is a summary and reflects Navigant Research’s current expectations based on market data and trend analysis. Market predictions and expectations are inherently uncertain and actual results may differ materially from those contained in this press release or the report. Please refer to the full report for a complete understanding of the assumptions underlying the report’s conclusions and the methodologies used to create the report. Neither Navigant Research nor Navigant undertakes any obligation to update any of the information contained in this press release or the report.

Pg18 Perspective Sujoy Ghosh Country Head First Solar India

Mr.Sujoy Ghosh, Country Head, First Solar, India

2017 is shaping up to be a record year for solar PV installations worldwide as well as in India. We have also witnessed sub 2cents/kwhr tariffs in auctions in Saudi Arabia and Mexico for projects that are expected to be commissioned over the next 24-30 months, thereby creating a further compression in the overall value chain that needs to be met by equipment suppliers, financing agencies and the service providers (engineering, procurement and O&M).  Hence the companies that continue to focus on reducing costs, increasing scale and lowering their cost of capital/cost of doing business would be able to sustain through these times. Specifically on the PV module technology, the focus would remain on lowering of cost of production by either optimizing manufacturing processes, and/ or leveraging economies of scale. Also with the transition to more installations between the two tropics, there would be equal focus on long term reliability under harsher climates (hot and humid) and quality and consistency of processes would be under increased scrutiny from the end users. 1500V inverters would probably increase their market share as plant owners try to exploit every ounce of optimization feasible in order to achieve lower LCOE’s, while the scale of the blocks increase due to average increase in project capacities. 2018 would also see a an increased focus on hybridization of PV systems with storage or other forms of generation as grid capacity congestion issues begin to start becoming noticeable with the growth in both solar and wind in the recent past.

Pg18 George John mytrah

Mr. George John,Head -Mytrah Global Services,Mytrah Energy

Reverse bidding has become a norm in the renewable energy sector. The low tariffs especially pertaining to Solar sector can be attributed to the decreasing cost of solar modules due to advancement in technology. However, it is noteworthy that even today, most of our capacity comes
from Chinese manufacturers. The heavy emphasis by the government on ‘Make In India’ initiative is expected to drive the domestic manufacturers into building capacities to compete with the Chinese manufacturers. This would increase the self-reliance of the Solar sector by reducing dependencies.Intermittence in energy supply has been an age-old characteristic of renewable energy sector. Although Solar provides a more predictive forecast based on seasonality and time of the day, the power generation remains intermittent. The increasing global awareness on Battery storage and the technological innovations in this sector is bound to impact the Solar sector in the coming year. A successful breakthrough in terms of balancing the capacities and cost will make Solar sector more profitable in future. With Global companies such as Tesla overlooking Battery Storage innovations,this future might not be too far away.From an investment standpoint, Rooftop Solar has gained momentum and this trend is expected to continue into 2018. Rooftop Solar has seen investment from small scale investors as well, since it provides energy security coupled with government incentives.Another interesting trend we expect to see in Solar sector, especially in the near future, is the rise of smart grid solutions and Hybrid models using both wind and solar power generation. The increasing use of digitalization has already reached the Solar sector and we expect to see increased efficiencies because of this.In conclusion, 2018 will be an interesting year for Solar sector from supply chain point of view as well the enhanced efficiencies.

Pg17 Perspective SIndicatum

Mr. Devin Narang Country Head-India Sindicatum Renewable Energy Company.

Globally, India has probably the most robust policies in place for all forms of Renewable energy. What can be expected in 2018 borrows heavily from the initiatives the Government has in store for the sector. Specific targets and a well-defined roadmap to achieving them are encouraging. Addition of power generation capacity – especially through solar parks; building of domestic manufacturing capacities; refinements in Solar Policy (for utility scale & rooftop systems) and Bid Document – in particular, with regard to applicable duties and taxes; resolution of State-specific project development bottlenecks; and enhanced bankability of projects -  these are some initiatives in the offing by the Government. Technology, on the other hand has also grown steadily, reflecting in increased component efficiencies at competitive prices. However, with regard to PV modules, prices are expected to pick up from the lows seen hitherto while stabilizing at the optimum. Although the Indian market is nascent when it comes to Storage, it would be interesting to see how solar projects combined with storage sustain in the long run. Finally, two (interconnected) aspects that need concerted initiative from different stakeholders are: creation of energy demand and ensured energy offtake. Schemes such as ‘Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana’ (DDUGJY) and ‘Ujwal Discom Assurance Yojana’ (UDAY) have been important enabling factors from a macro perspective. Such developments have spurred growth in the sector – which stands at 15GW plus installed capacity on date. The achievement of 100GW of solar isn’t far.

Deployment of utility-scale Renewable Energy, particularly Wind and Solar Power, has progressed rapidly over the last few years despite recent challenges.

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Mr. Vivek Mishra Executive Director Meghraj Capital Advisors Private Limited
 
I foresee Solar attracting maximum investment in the next five years. Solar is the thrust area for GOI for achieving RE targets. The Ecosystem required for its growth has been put in place. The project risks and their mitigation strategies are known.  Solar because of viable tariffs and matured technology has attracted the interest of investors.  
 
The Government of India has set a renewable energy target of 175 GW to be achieved by 2022 of which solar will contribute 100 MW. India’s RE capacity at the end of FY17 was about 57 GW with wind contributing more than half of it, but Solar is gaining ground steadily. If the RE target has to be achieved, the current RE capacity has to triple in the remaining five years. As expected, major capacity contribution has to come from Solar (both IPP and rooftop), where the capacity has to increase at least nine times. In order to facilitate this, Government has put in place conducive policies & programmes (Eg. Solar Park and JNNSM), introduced infrastructure initiatives such as Green Corridors for evacuation from solar rich regions, created a demand push through increased solar RPO (from 2.5% to 8%) for obligated entities, promotion of solar pumps and other solar products, created capacity through Surya Mitra Program and facilitated development of indigenous manufacturing capability through Make in India and push to solar R&D. Government has exempted solar projects from environmental clearances and has facilitated the acquisition of land through Solar Parks. So far 34 Solar Parks in 21 states with a total capacity of 20,000 MW have received in-principle approval under Phase I of the initiative and under Phase II additional 20,000 MW has been approved.
 
Solar rooftop is attractive for Commercial and Industrial consumers as their retail tariffs are considerably higher than the cost of generation in most of the states. These consumers have added significant capacity under capex model. For residential consumers the payback period is still high; however, in future as retail tariffs increase, the solar rooftop will be an attractive proposition for them as well. 
 
It has been estimated that Solar will require investment of around INR 4800 billion, if it has to achieve the target. Fortunately the ever decreasing generation cost, established technology and growing demand has attracted strategic and financial investors, venture capitalists, private equity and pension funds. This has led to flow of investment and adoption of low cost financial innovations such as green bonds.  The solar industry is expected to mature with consolidation and see emergence of professionally managed relatively firms.
 
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Mr. Rahul Goswami, Managing Director, Greenstone Investment Bank
 
Greenstone expects utility scale solar and wind projects to continue to dominate the renewable energy investment sector in India over the next five years. We believe this will be driven by a number of factors:
 
First, the cost of electricity from solar and wind projects has achieved grid parity and the long-term trend suggests that costs will continue to decline. Consequently, we do expect substantial tenders for additional capacity and for utilities to increase their focus on integration and management. 
 
Second, there is substantial existing capital available to fund projects. Several established platforms have sufficient capital lient the appetite to grow substantially. Additionally, the sector continues to witness increasing interest from international groups. 
 
Third, transmission capacity is sufficient to absorb an additional 10 GW+ of intermittent generation based on feedback from industry consultants. Consequently, assuming the other areas can be appropriately managed (such as land acquisition), we do not see significant near term transmission hurdles for renewable energy. 
 
Ultimately, the utility scale renewable energy markets have matured substantially and our expectation is that robust capacity addition will continue over the next five years. 
 

Developers face varied challenges in building and managing a rooftop solar asset portfolio and some of the key challenges have been highlighted below.

Issuances of bonds, non-convertible debentures (NCDs) included have been witnessing record volumes for past 3 years.

Impact Of GST On Solar Sector

Key Driving factors for falling bids in india

“A road map has been laid out to set up at least 50 solar parks, each capacity of 500 MW. How do you think the solar parks in India are shaping up?”

Ecoprogetti srl is the leading manufacturer of complete Turnkey Line for module manufacturing.

Growth Opportunities in the Indian PV Market & Requirement of Indian Module Companies

How important it has become for developers to have solar fencing & security systems on the solar projects

Effects of choosing the right type of wires on the overall performance of the product/ project. 

Mercom Capital Group, llc, a global clean energy communications and consulting firm, has released its annual report on funding and merger and acquisition (M&A) activity for the solar sector in 2017. 

Total global corporate funding into the solar sector, including venture capital/private equity (VC), debt financing, and public market financing raised came to $12.8 billion, a 41 percent increase compared to the $9.1 billion raised in 2016.  

To learn more about Mercom’s 2017 Solar Funding and M&A Report, visit: http://bit.ly/MercomSolarQ42017

"A strong fourth quarter pushed overall funding higher in 2017. Higher installation levels around the world, the lack of threat to the solar investment tax credit, lower than expected tariff recommendation by U.S. ITC, strong debt financing activity, and over a billion dollars in securitization deals helped the solar industry have a much better year in terms of financial activity compared to 2016. After several challenging years, most of the solar securities were up in 2017 reflecting overall positive sentiments around the solar industry even as several Chinese manufacturers decided to go private. Of course, all this could change swiftly if President Trump decides to impose higher tariffs in the trade case," commented Raj Prabhu, CEO and Co-Founder of Mercom Capital Group. 

Global VC investments came to $1.6 billion in 99 deals in 2017, up 30 percent from the $1.3 billion raised by 78 deals in 2016 - led by several large private equity deals in India.  

Solar downstream companies accounted for 85 percent of total VC funding in 2017, bringing in $1.4 billion of the total $1.6 billion raised. Thin-film companies brought in $106 million while service providers raised $47 million. 

Investments in PV technology companies came to $40 million and Balance of Systems (BoS) companies raised $36 million. The concentrated solar power (CSP) category raised $8 million and the concentrator photovoltaics (CPV) category received $6 million. 

The top VC/PE deals reported in 2017 included a deal for $200 million signed by Lightsource Renewable Energy. ReNew Power also had two deals of $200 million each, followed by Greenko Energy Holdings which raised $155 million. Hero Future Energies raised $125 million and CleanMax Solar raised $100 million. Overall, five of the top six solar VC funding deals in 2017 came from India.

There were 162 VC/PE investors that participated in funding rounds in 2017, with eight involved in multiple rounds: Engie, Avista Development, DSM Venturing, InnoEnergy, Innogy, International Finance Corporation (IFC), Shell, and Techstars. 

Public market financing was flat in 2017 to $1.7 billion raised in 33 deals from $1.8 billion raised in 27 deals in 2016. Three IPOs were logged during the year that raised a combined total of $363 million for Canadian Solar Infrastructure Fund, New Energy Solar Fund, and Clenergy. 

Announced debt financing in 2017 surged to $9.5 billion compared to $6 billion in 2016. There were six securitization deals in 2017 totaling $1.3 billion. Securitization deals surpassed the $1 billion for the  year, a first. 

Large-scale project funding announced in 2017 reached a $14 billion raised in 167 deals, compared to $9.4 billion raised in 133 deals during 2016. A total of 161 investors funded about 20.5 GW of large-scale solar projects in 2017 compared to 5.9 GW funded by 153 investors in 2016. 

The top investors in large-scale projects included Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC), which invested in 13 projects, followed by Santander with eight deals, and Commonwealth Bank of Australia and Siemens Financial Services with six deals each. 

$2.4 billion was raised by 16 residential and commercial solar project funds in 2017 which was down 50 percent compared to $4.9 billion raised by 30 funds in 2016. The top fundraisers were: Sunlight Financial, Sunnova, Solar Mosaic, SolarCity, and Spruce Finance. Since 2009, solar residential and commercial firms offering leases, PPAs, and loans have raised more than $24.8 billion in lease and loan funds. 

There were 71 corporate M&A transactions in the solar sector in 2017, up slightly from 68 transactions recorded in 2016. Solar downstream companies were involved in 51 of these transactions. Engie acquired three companies while BayWa, Brookfield Asset Management, Horizon Solar Power, Siva Power, Solar Spectrum, and Sonnedix acquired two companies each. The largest and the most notable transaction in 2017 was the $1.6 billion acquisition of FTP Power (sPower) by AES and Alberta Investment Management (AIMCo) from Fir Tree Partners.

Project acquisitions jumped up 67 percent as a record 228 large-scale solar projects with a combined capacity of more than 20.4 GW were acquired in 2017, compared to 2016 when 12.2 GW changed hands in 218 transactions. 

Mercom also tracked 187 large-scale project announcements across the globe that totaled 10.6 GW in Q4 2017 and 922 large-scale project announcements totaling 50.1 GW for all of 2017.

To learn more about Mercom’s 2017 Solar Funding and M&A Report, visit: http://bit.ly/MercomSolarQ42017

 

About Mercom Capital Group

Mercom Capital Group, llc, is a global communications and consulting firm focused exclusively on clean energy and financial communications. Mercom’s consulting division advises cleantech companies on new market entry, custom market intelligence, and overall strategic decision making. Mercom’s consulting division also delivers highly respected industry market intelligence reports covering Solar Energy and Smart Grid. Our reports provide timely industry happenings and ahead-of-the-curve analysis specifically for C-level decision making. Mercom’s communications division helps clean energy companies and financial institutions build powerful relationships with media, analysts, government decision makers, local communities, and strategic partners. For more information about Mercom Capital Group, visit: http://www.mercomcapital.com. To get a copy of Mercom’s popular market intelligence reports, visit: http://eepurl.com/cCZ6nT.

The prices attained in recent auctions are influenced by several factors

The importance of quality infrastructure across the solar value chain

Various Instruments For India’s Clean Energy Support Measures 

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Credits: IRENA REMap India Paper 2017

Mercom Capital Group, llc, a global clean energy communications and consulting firm, has released its latest quarterly report on funding and merger and acquisition (M&A) activity for the Battery Storage, Smart Grid, and Energy Efficiency sectors during the third quarter and first nine months of 2017. 

To get a copy of the report, visit: http://bit.ly/MercomSGQ32017

Mercom found that, in the first nine months (9M) of 2017, $1.23 billion was raised by Battery Storage, Smart Grid, and Efficiency companies, up from $910 million raised in 9M 2016.

Battery Storage

In Q3 2017, VC funding for Battery Storage companies dropped to $83 million in seven deals compared to $422 million raised in 10 deals during Q2 2017. A year earlier, $30 million was raised in nine deals in Q3 2016. In 9M 2017, $563 million was raised in 25 deals compared to $209 million raised in 29 deals in 9M 2016. 

The top VC funded Battery Storage companies in Q3 2017 were: Advanced Microgrid Solutions, which raised $34 million from Energy Impact Partners, Southern Company, DBL Partners, GE Ventures, AGL Energy, Macquarie Capital, and former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger; Romeo Power, which raised $30 million; and Gridtential Energy, which secured $11 million from 1955 Capital, East Penn Manufacturing, Crown Battery Manufacturing, Leoch International, Power-Sonic, The Roda Group, and the company's chairman, Ray Kubis. 

In all, 16 investors participated in Battery Storage funding in Q3 2017 with Energy Storage Downstream companies raising the most. 

The third quarter saw two debt and public market financing deals in Battery Storage totaling $45 million compared to $107 million raised in seven deals in Q2 2017. In 9M 2017, $174 million was raised in 11 deals compared to six deals that brought in $120 million in 9M 2016. 

There was one M&A transaction involving a Battery Storage company in Q3 2017 compared to three M&A transactions in Q2 2017. In the first nine months of 2017, there were five transactions (two disclosed), down from nine transactions (two disclosed) in 9M 2016. Two Storage projects were also acquired in Q3 2017.

Smart Grid

VC funding for Smart Grid companies in Q3 2017 totaled $76 million in 14 deals, compared to $139 million raised in eight deals in Q2 2017. In a year-over-year (YoY) comparison, $11 million was raised in seven deals in Q3 2016. In 9M 2017, $380 million was raised in 36 deals compared to $343 million raised in the same number of deals in 9M 2016. 

Top VC funded Smart Grid companies included: Particle, which secured $20 million from Spark Capital, Qualcomm Ventures, and previous investors; INTEREL, which raised $11.9 million in funding from Jolt Capital; Roost, which received $10.4 million in funding from Aviva Ventures, Desjardins Insurance, and Fosun RZ Capital; Tritium, which secured $8 million from entrepreneur Brian Flannery; and Innowatts, which raised $6 million from Shell Technology Ventures, Iberdrola Ventures - Perseo, and Energy & Environment Investment. 

In all, 28 investors participated in Smart Grid VC funding rounds in Q3 2017, with SG Communications companies raising the most. 

A total of $11 million was raised in one debt financing deal in Q3 2017 compared to the $9 million raised in one deal in Q2 2017. In 9M 2017, $20 million was raised in two deals compared to $217 million raised in four deals in 9M 2016. 

There were six M&A transactions (two disclosed) in Q3 2017. In Q2 2017, there were six transactions (two disclosed). In 9M 2017, there were 19 transactions (five disclosed) compared to 13 transactions (four disclosed) in 9M 2016. 

Efficiency

VC funding raised by Energy Efficiency companies in Q3 2017 came to $47 million in eight deals compared to $29 million raised in six deals in Q2 2017. In a YoY comparison, $61 million was raised in five deals in Q3 2016. In the first nine months of 2017, $289 million was raised by Energy Efficiency companies in 28 deals compared to $358 million raised in the same number of deals in 9M 2016. 

The Top VC deals in the efficiency category included: Power Survey and Equipment, which received $24 million in funding from EnerTech Capital, Investissement Quebec, Cycle Capital Management, Fonds de solidarite FTQ, and BDC Capital; Corvi, which received a $10 million strategic investment from Hero Enterprise; and Deco Lighting, which secured $8 million in funding from Siena Funding. 

In all, nine investors participated in VC funding in Q3 2017. Within the sector, Efficiency Components companies brought in the most funding. 

Announced debt and public market financing for Energy Efficiency technologies plunged to $615 million in four deals in Q3 2017 compared to the $1.4 billion raised in six deals in Q2 2017. In 9M 2017, $2.3 billion was raised in 13 deals compared to the same amount raised in 11 deals in 9M 2016. 

There was one Property Accessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing deal in Q3 2017 for $205 million versus three deals in Q2 2017 that raised $668 million. In 9M 2017, $873 million was raised in four deals compared to the $1.3 billion raised in six deals in 9M 2016. 

There were two M&A transactions (one disclosed) involving Energy Efficiency companies in Q3 2017, up from just one undisclosed transaction in Q2 2017. For the first nine months of 2017, there were seven transactions (three disclosed), down from 12 transactions in 9M 2016 (four disclosed).

To get a copy of the report, visit: http://bit.ly/MercomSGQ32017

 

About Mercom Capital Group

Mercom Capital Group, llc, is a global communications and research and consulting firm focused on cleantech. Mercom delivers market intelligence and funding and M&A reports covering Battery Storage, Smart Grid, and Energy Efficiency and Solar and advises companies on new market entry, custom market intelligence and strategic decision-making. Mercom's communications division helps companies and financial institutions build powerful relationships with media, analysts, local communities, and strategic partners. About Mercom: http://www.mercomcapital.com. Mercom's clean energy reports: http://store.mercom.mercomcapital.com/page/.

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VALUE CREATION IN THE PHOTOVOLTAIC SECTOR

Auctions in the power sector

Large-scale project funding crosses $10 billion in 9M 2017

Mercom Capital Group, llc, a global clean energy communications and consulting firm, released a new report on funding and merger and acquisition (M&A) activity for the solar sector in the third quarter of 2017 and the first nine months of 2017.

To learn more about the report, visit: http://bit.ly/MercomSolarQ32017 

Total corporate funding (including venture capital funding, public market and debt financing) in the first nine months (9M) of 2017 was slightly lower compared to the same period in 2016, with about $7.1 billion raised compared to the $7.5 billion raised in 9M 2016. There were 143 deals in 9M of 2017 compared to 125 deals in the same period of 2016.

Looking at just Q3 2017 data, Mercom found that corporate funding in the solar sector grew 74 percent compared to Q2 2017, with $2.4 billion raised in 45 deals. In Q2 2017, $1.4 billion was raised in 37 deals. Year-over-year (YoY), funding in Q3 2017 was about 19 percent lower compared to the $3 billion raised in Q3 2016. 

“Debt financing activity outside of the United States helped bump up corporate funding in the third quarter as financing activity in the United States was muted ahead of the Suniva anti-dumping case decision,” commented Raj Prabhu, CEO of Mercom Capital Group. 

Global VC funding (venture capital, private equity, and corporate venture capital) for the solar sector in 9M 2017 rose a slight seven percent to $985 million from $925 million raised during the same period in 2016, largely due to a strong first quarter in 2017.

In Q3 2017, VC funding for the solar sector doubled with $269 million raised in 23 deals compared to $128 million raised in the same number of deals during Q2 2017. Most of the VC funding raised in Q3 2017 (72 percent) went to solar downstream companies with $193 million in 13 deals. 

The Top VC deal in the third quarter of 2017 was the $100 million raised by Indian rooftop installer CleanMax Solar. It was followed by the $56 million raised by Singapore’s Sunseap Group, the $21 million secured by Sol Voltaics, and Ampt’s $15 million. Ubiquitous Energy also raised $15 million. A total of 35 investors participated in solar funding in the third quarter of 2017. 

Solar public market funding was approximately 12 percent lower compared to the first nine months of 2016, with $1 billion raised in 9M 2017 compared to $1.2 billion raised during the same period of 2016. Public market financing fell significantly in Q3 2017 with just $79 million in four deals, down from $473 million raised in six deals in Q2 2017. 

During the first nine months of 2017, debt financing activity accounted for $5.1 billion in 51 deals, which was almost six percent lower compared to the first nine months of 2016, when $5.4 billion was raised in 55 deals. In Q3 2017, announced debt financing rose steeply to $2.1 billion in 18 deals compared to the $798 million raised in eight deals during the second quarter of 2017. 

In the top debt deals, Greenko Energy Holdings raised $1 billion in green bonds in two separate deals, $650 million and $350 million. Cypress Creek Renewables also received $450 million from Temasek. 

Announced large-scale project funding in 9M 2017 crossed the $10 billion mark, with $10.2 billion raised for the development of 117 projects. For the third quarter of 2017 alone, announced large-scale project funding came in at more than $2.8 billion in 36 deals.

Announced residential and commercial solar funds totaled $2.2 billion in 9M 2017, which was lower by almost 35 percent when compared to the $3.4 billion raised during the same period of 2016. 

The first nine months of 2017 saw a total of 58 solar M&A transactions, compared to the 48 transactions seen in the same period (9M) of 2016. There were 18 solar M&A transactions in Q3 2017, up from 11 solar M&A transactions seen in the preceding quarter (Q2 2017) and equal to the number of transactions (18) posted in Q3 2016. Of the 18 total transactions in Q3 2017, 13 involved solar downstream companies, three involved PV manufacturers, and there was one transaction each by a BOS company and an Equipment provider. 

There were 161 large-scale project acquisitions in first nine months of 2017 aggregating over 14.6 GW, compared to 145 project acquisitions totaling just 7.1 GW during the same period of 2016.

Similar to Q2 2017, investment firms and funds were the most active acquirers in Q3 2017, with 26 projects for over 2 GW, followed by project developers with 16 transactions totaling over 1.1 GW. 

Mercom tracked 296 new large-scale project announcements worldwide in Q3 2017 totaling 15.7 GW. 

To learn more about the report, visit: http://bit.ly/MercomSolarQ32017

 

About Mercom Capital Group

Mercom Capital Group, llc, is a global communications and consulting firm focused exclusively on clean energy and financial communications. Mercom’s consulting division advises cleantech companies on new market entry, custom market intelligence and overall strategic decision making. Mercom’s consulting division also delivers highly respected industry market intelligence reports covering Solar Energy and Battery Storage, Smart Grid, & Efficiency. Our reports provide timely industry happenings and ahead-of-the-curve analysis specifically for C-level decision making. Mercom’s communications division helps clean energy companies and financial institutions build powerful relationships with media, analysts, government decision makers, local communities and strategic partners. For more information about Mercom Capital Group, visit: http://www.mercomcapital.com. To get a copy of Mercom’s popular market intelligence reports, visit: http://eepurl.com/cCZ6nT.

REQUIREMENTS FOR SOLAR PV DEVELOPMENT

Presently, the unutilized roofs for roof top plant, barren and low vegetation land for ground mounted systems and Building Integrated Solar PV Plants have been using these unutilized locations for solar plant installation as these require large space for installation of power plant.

Mercom Capital Group, llc, a global clean energy communications and consulting firm, released its report on funding and mergers and acquisitions (M&A) activity for the Battery Storage, Smart Grid, and Energy Efficiency sectors for the second quarter and first half of 2017. 

In the first half (1H) of 2017, $1.03 billion was raised by Battery Storage, Smart Grid, and Efficiency companies compared to $807 million in 1H 2016.

To get a copy of the report, visit: http://bit.ly/MercomSGQ22017

Battery Storage

Venture capital (VC) funding (including private equity and corporate venture capital) for Battery Storage companies jumped in Q2 2017 to $422 million in 10 deals compared to $58 million in eight deals in Q1 2017 due to very large funding deal. Year-over-year (YoY) funding was higher compared to $125 million raised in Q2 2016 from 10 deals. In the first half (1H) of 2017, $480 million was raised in 18 deals compared to the $179 raised in 20 deals in 1H 2016. 

The top VC funded Battery Storage companies in Q2 2017 were: Microvast Power, which raised $400 million from CITIC Securities, CDH Investment, National Venture Capital, and others; Vionx Energy received $12.75; and Moixa Technology raised $3.2 million in funding from the Greater Manchester Combined Authority, Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), and First Imagine! Ventures. 

Eleven investors participated in Battery Storage funding in Q2 2017 with Lithium-based Battery companies raising the most. 

There were seven debt and public market financing deals in Battery Storage in Q2 2017 totaling $107 million compared to $22 million in two deals in Q1 2017. In 1H 2017, there was $129 million raised in nine deals compared to three deals bringing in $69 million in 1H 2016. 

There was one Battery Storage project fund in 1H 2017 for $152 million compared to three deals raising $195 million in 1H 2016. 

Battery Storage project funding in 1H 2017 totaled $5 million in two deals compared to no deals in 1H 2016. 

There were three M&A transactions involving Battery Storage companies in Q2 2017. In Q1 2017, there was one M&A transaction. In the first half of 2017, there were four transactions (one disclosed) compared to six transactions in 1H 2016 (two disclosed). 

Smart Grid

VC funding for Smart Grid companies in Q2 2017 came to $139 million in eight deals compared to $164 million in 14 deals in Q1 2017. In a YoY comparison, $222 million was raised from 15 deals in Q2 2016. $304 million was raised in 22 deals in 1H 2017 compared to $331 million raised in 29 deals in 1H 2016. 

The top VC funded Smart Grid companies included: Actility, which secured $75 million from Creadev, Bosch, Inmarsat, Idinvest, Bpifrance, Ginko Ventures, KPN, Orange Digital Ventures, Swisscom, and Foxconn; ChargePoint raised $43 million from Siemens; FreeWire Technologies received $7.6 million; and Enervalis secured $4.8 million from LRM, Nuhma, and ABB. 

Seventeen investors participated in Smart Grid VC funding rounds in Q2 2017 with Demand Response companies raising the most. 

There was one debt and public market financing deal in Smart Grid in Q2 2017 totaling $9 million compared to no deals in Q1 2017. In 1H 2017, $9 million was raised in one deal compared to $217 million in three deals in 1H 2016. 

There were six Smart Grid M&A transactions in Q2 2017 compared to seven transactions in Q1 2017. In the first half of 2017, there were 13 transactions (three disclosed) compared to five transactions (two disclosed) in 1H 2016. 

Efficiency

VC funding into Energy Efficiency technology companies fell significantly to $29 million in six deals in Q2 2017 compared to the $213 million in 14 deals in Q1 2017 and $86 million in nine deals in Q2 2016. $242 million was raised in 20 deals in 1H 2017 compared to $297 million raised in 23 deals in 1H 2016. 

The Top Efficiency VC deals included: $15 million raised by CIMCON Lighting from Energy Impact Partners; the $5 million raised by Tendril Networks; OptiWatti raised $4 million from Taaleri Kiertotalous and Butterfly Ventures; and Illumitex raised $4 million from WP Global Partners and NEA. 

Six investors participated in VC funding in Q2 2017. Within the sector, Efficiency Lighting companies brought in the most funding. 

Debt and public market financing for Efficiency companies rebounded to $1.4 billion in six deals in Q2 2017 compared to $301 million in three deals in Q1 2017. In 1H 2017, there was $1.7 billion raised in nine deals compared to $2 billion raised in the same number of deals in 1H 2016. 

There was one M&A transaction in the Efficiency sector in Q2 2017 compared to four in Q1 2017. In the first half of 2017, there were five transactions (two disclosed) compared to 10 transactions in 1H 2016 (four disclosed).

To get a copy of the report, visit: http://bit.ly/MercomSGQ22017

About Mercom Capital Group

Mercom Capital Group, llc, is a global communications and research and consulting firm focused on cleantech. Mercom delivers market intelligence and funding and M&A reports covering Battery Storage, Smart Grid, and Energy Efficiency and Solar and advises companies on new market entry, custom market intelligence and strategic decision-making. Mercom's communications division helps companies and financial institutions build powerful relationships with media, analysts, local communities, and strategic partners. About Mercom: http://www.mercomcapital.com. Mercom's clean energy reports: http://store.mercom.mercomcapital.com/page/.

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