Tag: Energy & Climate

Clean Energy Investing: Changing Lives, Changing the World

By Maxwell Roe, Business Development, Clean Power USA

Renewable Energy was the most-added source of new power generation in 2017. In an increasing number of regions, clean energy is the cheapest source of new electricity. Confidence in the clean energy sector can be seen in the large commitments made by major banking institutions. The public and our investors are grasping the reality of a renewable energy future. Rooftop solar panels are commonplace and are required on new homes in some cities in California. Solar photovoltaic installers and wind turbine service technicians have become the nation’s two fastest-growing occupations.

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Strengthening Clean Energy with a Diverse Workforce

By Kristen Graf, Executive Director, WRISE

According to NREL, renewable electricity generation from technologies that are commercially available today, in combination with a more flexible grid, is adequate to supply 80 percent of total U.S. electricity generation in 2050. Now is the time to take a close look at the pipeline of potential clean energy workers ensuring that we are bringing the best minds and diverse perspectives to the table. Prioritizing diversity both in terms of race and gender are important components for building a successful company. Research from McKinsey makes it increasingly clear that companies with a diverse workforce perform better financially.

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The Future Is Decentralized

By David Breecker, Founder and Managing Director, Microgrid Systems Laboratory

In every part of the world, from the industrialized to the emerging economies, energy systems are shifting from a highly centralized architecture (i.e., large generation plants, long transmission lines, and one-way flows of energy) to a decentralized, distributed network model. This model takes the form of microgrids (or “mini-grids” in Africa and Asia), small, integrated systems capable of autonomous operation; and as Distributed Energy Resource Management Systems and Virtual Power Plants, as ways of making the existing bulk power grid more flexible. Some compare this to the advent of “the internet of energy.”

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Understanding Food and Climate Change: A Systems Perspective explores the links between food systems and our changing climate with an emphasis on systems thinking. A systems approach helps to illuminate how seemingly disconnected phenomena are often dynamically linked and can be understood best when viewed in a larger context.

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The challenge is clear for global food and beverage companies: as the population rises, the agriculture sector they rely on will need to produce more food with fewer greenhouse gas emissions while shifting toward farm practices that conserve or restore diminishing water and soil resources. Sustainable sourcing strategies and supply chain transparency are essential for the food and beverage industry to ensure that their suppliers are making these critical changes. As significant owners of and lenders to companies, investors can be a major force in driving more sustainable practices.

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Putting our Feminism into our Finances

By Kristin Hull, Founder and CEO, Nia Impact Capital

From wealth advisors and fund managers, to start up entrepreneurs, to company leadership at the board and executive levels, intuitively we have long known the need for greater gender diversity within the financial industry. Research shows a variety of benefits for companies, and their investors, that embrace inclusivity. With findings that show diverse teams are more innovative (leading to increased revenue generation) and that companies with women in leadership perform better during times of financial uncertainty, we are well on our way to making a strong financial case for inclusion.

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