Updates and Comments

The Renewable Investment Tax Credit passed in the senate.  I guess this is eclipsed by the current credit crisis, but this is good news.

I had a journalist ask me the other day what my opinion was on how the current credit crisis would effect renewable energy companies.  At the time I said  that shaky, mediocre propositions might not go through, and that some risky projects, especially mega-projects might get cancelled out-right.  I believed then (and believe now) that really solid technologies, business models and companies would weather this storm and excellent companies might hardly notice.  There are also the companies that Leeman Brothers, Goldman Sachs and others invested in, and I have no idea what this all means to them, but I wish them good luck.

What I’m interested in is how this will effect residential and building integrated solar installation.  It seems obvious that if there’s a construction downturn, that less new buildings with solar will be built, but if that’s the case, then that de facto means that more people, companies and institutions will be looking at the buildings they’ve got and thinking about staying for the long haul.  I think that companies that can offer a really attractive offer for solar energy installations will come out of this really well.  If a company knows it’s not moving for a decade or longer, added efficiency upgrades to their current facilities makes sense.

Right now I think solar hot water companies are going to boom because the cost versus benefit really makes sense there, and I think that home solar will have a short term lull, followed by a subsequent boom starting next year.  I said that 2009 will probably be the solar year, and I stand by that.

Also, I visited Upper Canada Solar Generation Ltd in Brockville, ON last week, and they have got some interesting things going on.  They showed me their test facility and their system using Enphase Micro-inverters.  I have to say, I was very impressed, definitely worth checking out. 

Sorry for the few updates last week, quite busy over here, but more coming this week.  Peace.

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