RE & EE Events Listing: UK, USA, Canada

The events are all UK and North America this week; hope there’s something of interest. If you can’t make them, you can definitely read the interview with Walt Patterson of Chatham House, who presents some thought-provoking ideas on the current state of electricity systems.

Upside/downside

A recent Ernst & Young survey found that “three-quarters of large international corporations are planning to significantly boost investment in clean tech over the next two years.” The consultants’ second annual survey of clean tech investment questioned 300 corporations with revenues of over $1 billion. Of those questioned, 77% said they expected to increase R&D efforts on clean tech over the next three years, with 44% predicting a spend of over $50 million.

Furthermore, “Climate change could contribute as much as 10% to overall portfolio risk for institutional investors over the next 20 years” according to a Mercer Report on Climate Change Scenarios & Implications for Strategic Asset Allocation, February 2011. The study asserts that institutional investors could lose trillions of dollars over the coming decades as a result of “continued delay in climate change policy action and lack of international coordination.” Discuss these and other related issues at the Global Carbon and Energy Markets Event taking place at the Cass Business School, London, UK on 22 June. Attendance is free but bookings are on a first come, first served basis.

East Coast

Solar PV market growth in the U.S. has been impressive, but questions remain over solar thermal and its inherent technology risk. Wind markets seem in decline, but geothermal markets are booming, with the power pipeline at 7GW and growing (source: ACORE). The 8th Renewable Energy Finance Forum – Wall Street, 21-22 June, New York, USA, is your one-stop shop to navigate these complex and ever-changing markets with advice from the experts.

West Coast on the East Coast

New performance standards for major sources of emissions could reinvigorate plans for state and regional carbon trading programs in the US, according to Gina McCarthy, assistant administrator for air and radiation with the Environmental Protection Agency. The new standards for the utility sector are due to be released in July. California’s proposed cap-and-trade market will begin in January, provided a legal challenge is overcome, but the performance standards could also breathe new life into the Western Climate Initiative, she suggested.

To understand all these issues, the key influences on supply and demand in the Californian market, the likely direction of carbon prices, and how the California program differs from the EU trading system, sign up for Climate Finance North America, 14-15 June, New York, USA.

Tracking Falls in energy usage

Implementing an energy monitoring, targeting and reporting system can be a powerful way to better manage energy project investments as well as identify additional project opportunities. In addition, the measurement and verification of actual savings (or production) achieved by a clean energy project is an important final step in the energy decision chain.

RETScreen International, in collaboration with REEEP and the NASA Langley Research Center, is developing a new energy management software tool. RETScreen’s forthcoming Performance Analysis module will enable users to monitor, analyze, and report key energy performance data to facility operators, managers and senior decision-makers.

A beta version of this energy tracking tool will be presented at the RETScreen Conference & Training Institute, which will take place from June 20-22, 2011 in Niagara Falls, Canada (hence my bad pun in the sub-title; sorry).

Chatham House rules

In a recent interview with SERN, Walt Patterson of Chatham house talked about how, since the adoption of metering systems at the beginning of the 20th century, electricity utilities have not encouraged customers to adopt high efficiency load technologies because they want to increase sales of electricity.

He believes that to achieve the changes necessary to reduce demand and emissions, regulators should focus on the energy bill for the customers and not on the unit price of electricity. Furthermore long-term contracts tied to the functionality of the property instead of current contracts with occupants of the buildings could facilitate energy efficiency investments.

You can read the full straight-talking interview here.

Right, I’m off to have a word with EDF about how they need to rethink my bill, then! I’ll be back with more on events in two weeks.

James Smith, REEEP Community Facilitator

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