The churn doesn’t stop in Washington just because summer is in full swing.

Less than a year after Robert Powelson was confirmed as a commissioner at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), he is moving on.

Powelson will become the president and CEO of the National Association of Water Companies, an industry group for private water companies (the majority of Americans are served by public water systems). The formal departure comes just after a 3-2 party-line vote that will undo PJM’s current capacity market and likely cause considerable uncertainty in the PJM market in the short term.

The best and worst pivots in cleantech.

Ah, the pivot.

Did you know that Nokia started out as a paper mill in Finland? Or that Nintendo once made instant rice? Many of the world's leading companies start out in radically different markets.

Cleantech is the same. Sales cycles are often slow, technologies don't work as planned, and customer needs are constantly evolving. In the tumultuous world of energy, companies pivot all the time.

On this week's episode of The Interchange, we celebrate the pivot.

We'll look back throughout history and choose the most successful and unsuccessful pivots of all time. What do they tell us about how to succeed

The solar and utility industries move to the next phase of smart inverter deployment.

Advanced solar inverters could be one of the biggest distributed energy resource (DER) communications and control points out there someday. With California now requiring at least early-stage “smart” capabilities from all new solar projects — and a standards roadmap for next-stage efforts like real-time communications and active controls — this future now has a template. 

There are still a lot of unanswered questions about how smart inverters will be used.

That was the consensus at Intersolar this week, where experts discussed the latest developments on the U.S. smart solar inverter front. After years of pilot projects, multi-stakeholder technical working groups, and slow

Enphase says its poised for profitable growth.

A month after announcing its surprise acquisition of SunPower’s microinverter business, Enphase said the boost to its AC module partnershiips will buoy its bottom line.

After a scary dip in share prices over the past few years and a Nasdaq delisting last summer, the acquisition marks an upward trajectory that will continue, according to Enphase vice president of marketing and pricing JD Dillon, during an interview at Intersolar North America. 

“The amount of profitable growth in front of the company, we know how to do it, the path is clear,” he said, adding that the share price is “going to go up —

The solar and utility industries move to the next phase of smart inverter deployment.

Advanced solar inverters could be one of the biggest distributed energy resource (DER) communications and control points out there someday. With California now requiring at least early-stage “smart” capabilities from all new solar projects — and a standards roadmap for next-stage efforts like real-time communications and active controls — this future now has a template. 

There are still a lot of unanswered questions about how smart inverters will be used.

That was the consensus at Intersolar this week, where experts discussed the latest developments on the U.S. smart solar inverter front. After years of pilot projects, multi-stakeholder technical working groups, and slow

2018 is the year of the solar loan.

Despite rising interest rates affecting all consumer lending, GTM Research forecasts in its latest report, Bringing Scale, Profitability and Value to the Residential Solar Market, that solar lending will become the No. 1 consumer finance solution for residential solar systems in 2018.


Source: Bringing Scale, Profitability and Value to the Residential Solar Market

This increase in solar lending comes at the expense of both the third-party-owned (TPO) and cash markets, which includes personal and home equity lending. The TPO market hit its peak in 2016 as companies like SolarCity and Vivint Solar spent

The joint venture will help customers access a lower cost of capital.

BYD Motors and Generate Capital have pioneered a new leasing program to accelerate the adoption of electric buses. The joint venture will also create new opportunities to deploy second-life energy storage.

Battery-powered buses are becoming more popular as cities and states look to curb local pollution and carbon emissions. But while EVs offer environmental benefits and fuel savings over time, they come at a premium compared to their diesel competitors.

The joint venture announced this week, described as the first of its kind, is designed to expand the U.S. electric bus fleet by reducing upfront costs.

Generate Capital will invest $200 million to buy

A month into a new hurricane season, Puerto Rico is still coping with its last disaster.

One month after José Román Morales left his position as interim chair of Puerto Rico’s Energy Commission (PREC), the body that regulates its utility and energy policy, his departure looks to mark the beginning of a period of more extensive change for the commission.

Two laws passed in late June will update responsibilities for PREC.

The first law allows selling generation assets now owned by the island’s utility, the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA), to private companies and opens the possibility of a concessionaire running its transmission and distribution systems. It gives the island 180 days to lay out that process. It also keeps regulatory authority

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