Cleantech crowdfunder Sunfunder wins Facebook’s ‘Cleantech Goes Social’ contest

At this week’s Cleantech Forum San Francisco 2013, Facebook and the Cleantech Group awarded the prize for the ‘Cleantech Goes Social’ contest, which aims to harness the power of the cleanweb and Facebook’s billion-person network to accelerate cleantech adoption and engage the public on sustainability issues. Facebook and the Cleantech Group awarded the first prize to SunFunder, a solar crowd … [Read more...]

A new Cleanweb focused venture fund emerges as Greenstart adjusts its business model

The cleanweb lost its most prominent accelerator program, however, it has gained a new venture capital firm and design studio. Greenstart, a San Francisco based accelerator program begun in 2011, has invested in startups that mostly develop software and services to support a more efficient use of energy and other resources. In other words, its primary area of expertise is the growing area known as … [Read more...]

Venture Capital and Cleantech weekly update

Silver Spring Networks (SSNI), which makes equipment for smart electricity grids, priced its offering at the middle of an expected range. Shares opened at $22 on the New York Stock Exchange, 29% above their IPO price, then traded at $21.15 in the minutes after the offering. The shares settled at $22. Silver Spring sold 4.75 million shares at $17 each, the midpoint of the $16-to-$18 range … [Read more...]

Obama to recommend federal agencies consider climate change impacts in decisions: could look to the UK for guidance

President Obama’s Inaugural Address showed that one of his main priorities is to take on the challenge of climate change, with or without the help of congress. In one of the ways Obama can move on climate change without congressional approval, the President is expected to announce that he will use the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), signed into law by President Nixon in 1970, to force … [Read more...]

Solar industry in US continues to brighten

A new report from the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and GTM Research has found that the amount of new solar electric capacity increased last year by 76 percent from 2011, raising the US’s market share of the world’s installations above 10 percent, up from roughly 5 to 7 percent over the past seven years. The analysis, along with other industry news this week, continues an impressive … [Read more...]

Venture Capital and Cleantech weekly update

Alphabet Energy Inc., a developer of a platform silicon thermoelectric technology that generates power from waste-heat sources, has raised $16 million in Series B funding. Natural gas giant Encana Corp. led the round, and was joined by return backers Claremont Creek Ventures, TPG Biotech and the CalCEF Clean Energy Angel Fund. This funding adds to the $12 million round A raised in 2011 and a $1M … [Read more...]

Can the City of Boulder become the model for the utility of the future?

The utility industry is facing drastic changes as renewable energy turns consumers into producers and hollows out the centralized production model. Many experts believe that unless the utilities reinvent themselves soon, their market share will begin to dwindle. We are currently seeing the emergence of economically viable electric distribution and operation systems, the microgrids of the future. … [Read more...]

The DOE and the exporting of liquefied natural gas

Continuing the discussion of natural gas and the new nominee for the Department of Energy, we point to the latest edition of the Economist, which paints the picture of a key issue facing new DOE nominee Dr. Ernest Moniz: On America’s Gulf coast, massive industrial facilities stand idle. Miles of twisting stainless-steel pipes and huge storage tanks gleam uselessly in the sun. They are a … [Read more...]

DOE nominee promotes natural gas as bridge to cleantech future

President Obama has nominated Ernest Moniz to head the Department of Energy, signaling further support for the cleantech sector. Moniz, a former undersecretary of energy during the Clinton administration and currently director of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Energy Initiative, is a strong proponent of cleantech innovation, but is also devoted to the “all-of-the-above” strategy for … [Read more...]

Venture Capital and Cleantech weekly update

Silver Spring Networks Inc., a smart grid networking company, announced it has set its IPO terms to around 3.07 million shares being offered at between $16 and $18 per share. It would have an initial market cap of approximately $754 million, were it to price in the middle of its range. In addition, existing shareholder Foundation Capital has agreed to purchase another $12 million via a private … [Read more...]