June 25, 2018 Read More →

‘Sea-change’ driving demand for renewable energy in U.S.

Reuters:

The wind and solar industries hope demand for carbon-free power from U.S. cities, states and corporations can offset headwinds from President Donald Trump’s tax policy and tariffs, developers said this week.

The Trump tax overhaul trimmed production and investment tax credits, and the administration also slapped a 30 percent tariff on imported solar panels. The moves, aimed at boosting manufacturing and economic growth, also dimmed prospects for renewables. But Trump’s withdrawal of federal support for Obama-era climate goals indirectly helped the industry by inspiring a backlash among U.S. cities, states and corporations, which have grown more ambitious about installing cleaner forms of energy.

Also, investors with years of deals under their belts are less wary about financing solar and wind than they were years ago, and socially responsible funds are actively seeking projects to invest in, according to executives and investors at the Renewable Energy Finance Forum-Wall Street in New York.

“There is a sea change in grass-roots demand for renewable energy,” Susan Nickey, managing director at Hannon Armstrong Sustainable Infrastructure Capital Inc., which invests about $1 billion a year in the sector, said in an interview on the sidelines of the conference on Tuesday. “More and more corporations and consumers are saying ‘We want 100 percent renewable energy,’” she said, adding city and state governments are adopting renewable-friendly policies to reflect that growing demand.

She cited a survey of financial institutions that showed two-thirds of respondents planned to boost renewable investments this year. Some 89 percent said they would sharply increase planned investments from now to 2030 unless government policies slow demand for renewable energy.

More: Renewable energy seeks demand, investment to survive Trump squeeze

Comments are closed.