The inevitability of a solar powered future

There are few more important questions for the 21st century than how we will power our electric grids. Literally trillions of dollars and are at stake, and possibly even the future of the planet. It’s a good bet that wind and solar will make up the majority of the future grid. But, wind and solar are not the same. Wind turbines benefit from economies of scale. As they get bigger, their costs go down; but only up to a point. By comparison, solar’s cost declines are driven by something even more powerful, economies of volume – the more you make of something, the cheaper it gets. Read More

What are the biggest trends threatening to disrupt the power industry?

I recently moderated a panel at the Energy Leaders Symposium called Disruptions in the Energy Industry. This event was hosted by Georgia Tech’s Center for Distributed Energy. To help frame the discussions, I defined a disruption as an industry changing so quickly that incumbents can’t keep up. I listed three drivers threatening to disrupt the power industry: a shift from economies of scale to economies of volumes, a shift from top-down to edge-in, and battery storage. Read More

Using new business models to unleash competition and innovation in the power industry

Competition is all about price, features, and customer experience. Right? That’s what business schools have been teaching for decades and it’s largely true. But, if you really want to change an industry, you need to change the rules. You need to create new business models. The untold story behind some of the most disruptive companies… Read More

Russia has infiltrated the US electric grid – is this our doomsday nightmare?

  “There is no backup system to the grid.” – Gretchen Bakke from her book, The Grid: The Fraying Wires Between Americans and Our Energy Future On March 15, 2018, the US government made a chilling announcement. Russian hackers have been successfully infiltrating the US electric grid over the last year, maybe longer. While rumors have been… Read More

The market has spoken – clean energy just became the cheapest source of electricity

Spreadsheets, analysis, and predictions are all great. But nothing compares to the free market if you want to really understand the trajectory of clean energy pricing. A recent bidding process for utility giant, Xcel Energy, just rocked the industry. Bids for clean energy projects including solar, wind, and batteries, came in lower than anything ever… Read More

An interview with Georgia Power’s CEO on the future of utilities and the grid

Utilities are an essential part of our clean energy future. Whether the future grid sees a rise in interconnected microgrids or centralized solar/wind/battery farms or a combination of both, the utilities’ wires and infrastructure are foundations upon which much of it will be built. Navigating the fastest path to clean energy requires the active, engaged… Read More

Bloomberg New Energy Finance Founder and Chairman Michael Liebreich shares his views on nuclear, solar, and the politics of energy

Michael Liebreich is a really smart guy. He grew up in London and attended Cambridge University to specialize in thermodynamics and nuclear engineering. After graduating in 1984, he became a member of the British Ski team and went on to compete in the world cups and the 1992 Olympics. Along the way, he got an… Read More

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A TED talk on accelerating the shift to clean energy

Electricity powers nearly every aspect of our modern, convenient lives. It’s so pervasive and easy that most of us take it for granted. But just behind the common electric outlet lies a system that is expensive, insecure, and, worst of all, dangerously dirty – the grid. For example, clean energy from the sun and wind… Read More